Coronavirus delays Earth Overshoot Day

In 2020, Earth Overshoot Day came later than in the previous year for the first time. On 22 August - more than three weeks later than in 2019 - humanity had consumed the natural resources that the Earth can regenerate in the course of a year. Thanks to Covid-19 humanity's environmental footprint shrank this year. But is this trend sustainable?

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Keskisuomalainen (FI) /

Hopefully this trend will continue

Keskisuomalainen is optimistic that the consumption of resources can be permanently reduced:

“The good news is that because of the coronavirus crisis, Earth Overshoot Day came three weeks later this year than last. Thanks to the state of emergency, the environmental footprint of humanity has been reduced by nine percentage points. This gives us hope that the climate crisis can be overcome. ... Sudden crises have already reduced the consumption of resources in the past, but normally it goes back to previous levels as soon as there is an upturn in the economy. If the world's leaders behave sensibly and strive for new growth using sustainable means, there may indeed be a lasting change for the better after the coronavirus crisis.”

Le Quotidien (LU) /

Greed is back

The environmental awareness that was awakened during the lockdown has gone right back to sleep, Le Quotidien laments:

“At the time people were delighted to see more flora and fauna flourishing in the wild. We swore that nothing would go back to the way it had been and that we would reinvent ourselves and enter a new world with a new environmental awareness. All just pious wishes as short-lived as the resolutions we make on December 31 and break again on New Year's Day. The greediest have regained their voracious appetites, their stomachs bigger than their eyes, which refuse to look reality in the face. We've started spending lavishly again and chosen to make up for the lost time in our social and economic lives, but not for the time we owe the planet.”