In today’s news:
Utahns are living beyond ecological means
The group Utah Vital Signs, a project of the Utah Population and Environment Coalition, has released the results of a study they conducted – “Utah Vital Signs 2007: The Ecological Footprint of Utah”.
The bottom line:
Utahns use 11 percent more than the state’s land can provided on a renewable basis.
“Utah is using more of nature’s resources than nature provides,” said [Helen] Peters. “We are drawing down resources that future generations make take advantage of.”
“The state has gone into ecological default,” said Sandra McIntyre, project director. “We are in an overshoot situation as of 2003.”
Figures from 1990 show the state was living within its ecological means, the group said. But by 2003, the population of Utah grew from 1.7 million to 2.4 million. Members pointed to the 40-percent population increase as involved in the change of the state’s ecological footprint.
What could be the reason for this increase in UTAH? Hmmmm…..
Part of the increase was because Utahns had the highest reproduction rate in the country, the group said.
How can this be addressed? According to the group that conducted the study:
….it’s better to have denser housing, like a close-living community with common green grounds, than a subdivision with large lots.
Water more key than land
Thanks for highlighting this. I’ve taken a course from one of the authors of the report, Dr. Phil Emmi. The approach is interesting. If I were doing this, I’d look for a limiting factor– probably water in the case of Utah. How many people can live in the state given the maximum sustainable water resources?
Re: Water more key than land
Really good questions! Please provide updates and info as you get the answers…..