Pushing the Boundaries: A Visualization of Our Footprint on Earth

Pushing the Boundaries: A Visualization of Our Footprint on Earth

Our earth is humanity's only comprehensive life support system. Yet our collective impact has negatively affected it in many ways, which can be measured through 8 global indicators of planetary health: ozone depletion, atmospheric COs levels, phosphorus and nitrogen runoff, ocean acidity, biodiversity, land use and freshwater use. These values have scientifically proven boundaries, beyond which there is an increased risk of detriment to life on earth. This chart seeks to provide a summary view of these indicators juxtaposed against total world population data and extrapolated over time. It demonstrates that we are approaching or have already exceeded several of these bounds. Finally, each indicator is paired with a "microcosmic" story suggesting just one of may ways in which individual behavior can bear influence on the global scale.

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Posted Oct 26, 2010
 
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