Ireland has the sixth largest ecological footprint in the world. The ecological footprint is a measure of our demand on the planets’ resources that compares how much nature we have against how much nature we use. Ireland has an ecological footprint of 6.22 per person and a bio capacity per person of 3.41. By having an ecological footprint greater than bio capacity Ireland has an ecological overshoot of 2.81. This means Ireland is using more of nature than nature can continue to supply, this has been referred to as living off an ecological credit card and is unsustainable.
The recent economic downturn has curbed, for the present, the type of growth in Ireland that was unsustainable. There has been substantial reduction in Ireland’s GHG emissions, due in significant part to the impact of the economic downturn. However, projections by the EPA indicate that even in the best case scenario, Ireland will breach its annual obligations for GHG emissions under the EU 2020 target in 2017.
To view the latest EPA report: Download here (PDF 0.1MB)
To view our VitalSigns Report 2013: Download here (PDF 1MB)
Why are we seeking additional support?
The environment is a strategic and valuable asset for Ireland and as such it must be protected and actively managed to ensure it forms the basis of Ireland’s economic well-being and a healthy society.
Globally, this issue is being addressed by the likes of William and Flora Hewlett Foundation but locally sourced independent funding is also required and is not really available in Ireland today.