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Spain exhausts all natural resources for the year today



Spain will have consumed all the natural resources that correspond to this year’s supply today, Earth Overcapacity Day in Spain, also known as ‘Overshoot Day’ worldwide.

Coinciding with this day, Friends of the Earth highlights the need to transform the current production and consumption model and calls on the Government to adopt measures to reduce the use of natural resources.

Earth Overcapacity Day arises to calculate the ecological footprint of each country and the planet with the help of the Global Footprint Network and marks the date on which the natural resources that would correspond to them in a year are consumed. In Spain this happens on May 20.

This means that as of today, Spanish society, including all its economic sectors, will have used all the natural resources including water, energy, raw materials, and food, among others, that would correspond to the availability for the entire year.

As of today, the organisation argues, the country enters an “ecological deficit”, that is, it has already consumed more than the Earth is capable of regenerating in that time.

Given the proximity of Overcapacity Day, a day in which we go into the red, Friends of the Earth calls for the urgency of reversing the current model of production and consumption. “It is vitally important to limit the indiscriminate use of materials and energy to adapt to the capacity that our planet has to regenerate. The current system is totally unviable to sustain life on Earth,” said Adriana Espinosa, responsible for natural resources and waste of Friends of the Earth.

The material footprint of the European Union, the total amount of fossil fuels, biomass, metals, and minerals used, included in imports, doubles the limits that could be considered safe and sustainable, in the opinion of Friends of the Earth.

For the entity, the current model is an unfair and unequal system: while the 1.2 billion poorest people are only responsible for 1% of global consumption, the richest billion people consume 72%.

“The current ecological and social crisis does not admit cosmetic measures. The European Union must now abandon the dogma of unlimited growth,” Espinosa stressed. “The utopian thing is to believe that we can continue consuming at the current rate without disastrous social and environmental consequences”.

In a context in which the European Union has joined the global race for resources, Friends of the Earth demands that the Government adopt measures to reduce the consumption of mineral resources and the generation of waste.

In this regard, the environmental organisation has highlighted the need to adopt a binding objective to reduce the material footprint at the state level, accompanied by a plan with concrete measures to achieve it and implement the Right to Repair Directive, approved by the European institutions in April of this year, so that it has a real impact, for example through repair incentives.

It is also proposed to “extend the useful life of products, facilitate their reuse and repair, these are concrete measures that can already be adopted, but that must be adopted within a paradigm shift that stops wasting natural resources and prioritises social and environmental justice,” Espinosa concluded.



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