Project Drawdown surveyed the most substantive, existing solutions to reduce carbon concentrations in the atmosphere. This impressive project, documented in an accessible, well-explained book, analyzed all available options on their overall potential for reducing carbon emissions or sequestering carbon by 2050. The table below lists the Drawdown solutions and indicates how many days Earth Overshoot Day would move if they were implemented. We include here Project Drawdown’s “plausible scenario,” but the Global Footprint Network research team studied more aggressive scenarios, too.

Solution Sector Total atmospheric CO2 reduction by 2050 - Plausible Scenario (tons of carbon dioxide equivalent) Solution Moves Earth Overshoot Day This Many Days
(2030 Scenario)
Solution Moves Earth Overshoot Day This Many Days
(2050 Scenario)
Refrigerant Management Materials 89.74 2.9 9.5
Wind Turbines (Onshore) Energy 84.6 2.7 8.9
Reduced Food Waste Food 70.53 2.3 7.4
Plant-Rich Diet Food 66.11 2.1 7
Tropical Forests Land Use 61.23 2 6.5
Educating Girls Women & Girls 59.6 1.9 6.3
Family Planning Women & Girls 59.6 1.9 6.3
Solar Farms Energy 36.9 1.2 3.9
Silvopasture Food 31.19 1 3.3
Rooftop Solar Energy 24.6 0.8 2.6
Regenerative Agriculture Food 23.15 0.7 2.4
Temperate Forests Land Use 22.61 0.7 2.4
Peatlands Land Use 21.57 0.7 2.3
Tropical Staple Trees Food 20.19 0.6 2.1
Afforestation Land Use 18.06 0.6 1.9
Conservation Agriculture Food 17.35 0.6 1.8
Tree Intercropping Food 17.2 0.5 1.8
Geothermal Energy 16.6 0.5 1.8
Managed Grazing Food 16.34 0.5 1.7
Nuclear Energy 16.09 0.5 1.7
Clean Cookstoves Food 15.81 0.5 1.7
Wind Turbines (Offshore) Energy 14.1 0.5 1.5
Farmland Restoration Food 14.08 0.5 1.5
Improved Rice Cultivation Food 11.34 0.4 1.2
Concentrated Solar Energy 10.9 0.3 1.2
Electric Vehicles Transport 10.8 0.3 1.1
District Heating Buildings & Cities 9.38 0.3 1
Multistrata Agroforestry Food 9.28 0.3 1
Wave and Tidal Energy 9.2 0.3 1
Methane Digesters (Large) Energy 8.4 0.3 0.9
Insulation Buildings & Cities 8.27 0.3 0.9
Ships Transport 7.87 0.3 0.8
LED Lighting (Household) Buildings & Cities 7.81 0.2 0.8
Biomass Energy 7.5 0.2 0.8
Bamboo Land Use 7.22 0.2 0.8
Alternative Cement Materials 6.69 0.2 0.7
Mass Transit Transport 6.57 0.2 0.7
Forest Protection Land Use 6.2 0.2 0.7
Indigenous Peoples' Land Management Land Use 6.19 0.2 0.7
Trucks Transport 6.18 0.2 0.7
Solar Water Energy 6.08 0.2 0.6
Heat Pumps Buildings & Cities 5.2 0.2 0.5
Airplanes Transport 5.05 0.2 0.5
LED Lighting (Commercial) Buildings & Cities 5.04 0.2 0.5
Building Automation Buildings & Cities 4.62 0.1 0.5
Water Saving - Home Materials 4.61 0.1 0.5
Bioplastic Materials 4.3 0.1 0.5
In-Stream Hydro Energy 4 0.1 0.4
Cars Transport 4 0.1 0.4
Cogeneration Energy 3.97 0.1 0.4
Perennial Biomass Land Use 3.33 0.1 0.4
Coastal Wetland Land Use 3.19 0.1 0.3
Rice Intensification Food 3.13 0.1 0.3
Walkable Cities Buildings & Cities 2.92 0.1 0.3
Household Recycling Materials 2.77 0.1 0.3
Industrial Recycling Materials 2.77 0.1 0.3
Smart Thermostats Buildings & Cities 2.62 0.1 0.3
Landfill Methane Buildings & Cities 2.5 0.1 0.3
Bike Infrastructure Buildings & Cities 2.31 0.1 0.2
Composting Food 2.28 0.1 0.2
Smart Glass Buildings & Cities 2.19 0.1 0.2
Women Smallholders Women & Girls 2.06 0.1 0.2
Telepresence Transport 1.99 0.1 0.2
Methane Digesters (Small) Energy 1.9 0.1 0.2
Nutrient Management Food 1.81 0.1 0.2
High-speed Rail Transport 1.52 0 0.2
Farmland Irrigation Food 1.33 0 0.1
Waste-to-Energy Energy 1.1 0 0.1
Electric Bikes Transport 0.96 0 0.1
Recycled Paper Materials 0.9 0 0.1
Water Distribution Buildings & Cities 0.87 0 0.1
Biochar Food 0.81 0 0.1
Green Roofs Buildings & Cities 0.77 0 0.1
Trains Transport 0.52 0 0.1
Ridesharing Transport 0.32 0 0
Micro Wind Energy 0.2 0 0
Total Days 33.5 111
Total Months 1.12 3.7