Many Earth Overshoot Days have been promoted by heads of states and government agencies before through tweets, video statements or references in speeches. But Earth Overshoot Day 2022 was the first one ever launched hand-in-hand with a national government: the Republic of Ecuador.
Ecuador has many ecological traditions. It is the first country to give constitutional rights to nature. It also was the first country to add “avoid entering an ecological deficit” to its national development agenda. That was 2009. Since then, the country’s Ministry of Environment, Water, and Ecological Transition has had an Ecological Footprint assessment group.
Ecuador also has one of the latest country overshoot days on the planet. If everyone lived like residents of Ecuador, Earth Overshoot Day would land as late as December 6th.
The launch at Ecuador’s Cancillería
As the calendar rolled over to Earth Overshoot Day in New Zealand, Fiji, and Russia, Ecuador’s Minister of Environment, Water, and Ecological Transition Gustavo Manrique presided over the launch in Quito at Ecuador’s Cancillería. The minister was joined by Global Footprint Network founder Mathis Wackernagel and Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and Human Mobility Luis Vayas Valdivieso. The event was also supported by video statements from ministers around the world, including Carlos Correo from Colombia, Zac Goldsmith from the UK, Rosalie Matondo from the Republic of the Congo, and Milciades Concepción from Panama.
“Earth Overshoot Day demonstrates that the current system of production and consumption is not compatible with the intention to continue to inhabit this planet. To better protect our natural resources and manage our demand for them, it is necessary to take concrete joint actions aimed at a new development model based on sustainability and regeneration. From Ecuador we call on the world to commit to this cause,” explained Minister Gustavo Manrique.
The launch of Earth Overshoot Day was organized in coordination with CC35 and his secretary general, Sebastian Navarro.
Watch the event recording, including many ministers’ statements, below (in Spanish)
From L to R: Luis Vayas Valdivieso, Gustavo Manrique, and Mathis Wackernagel.
Minister of Environment Gustavo Manrique launches Earth Overshoot Day 2022
Academic event at the Universidad San Francisco de Quito
Following the launch event, Universidad San Francisco de Quito’s faculty of law environmental club hosted an event with Minister Manrique and Mathis Wackernagel, moderated by Verónica Arias, Executive Director of CC35 and former Director of Environment for the City of Quito. The topic of discussion was “The predictable foreseeable future: What will be of value in a world with ecological overshoot?” The group discussed which public and private investments will remain valuable in the predictable future of climate change and resource constraints, and how this information can help direct public policy.
To conclude the event, Minister Manrique signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Global Footprint Network with the intent to form a “One-Planet Alliance.” It is the role and the responsibility of the One-Planet Alliance, a council of nations with a shared vision in addressing natural resource security, to oversee, sustain, and grow the National Footprint and Biocapacity Accounts, and make them accessible around the world.
Listen to the conversation (in Spanish) below:
Minister of Environment Gustavo Manrique and Mathis Wackernagel signing the Memo of Understanding to develop a One-Planet Alliance.