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What is Earth Day and how can technology help?


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Earth Day has gained more and more coverage over the last few years, and rightly so. But it can be hard to cut through all the conflicting noise out there to gain an understanding of what it actually is, how it could affect you, and how you can make a difference.

Earth Day started in 1970 and was created to gain awareness of the movement to protect the earth for future generations. It has now been 53 years since its inception so what, if anything, has changed? Unfortunately, nothing that positive. 

First and foremost, the population of the globe has doubled in size. As you can imagine, that means more land is being used, more meat is being consumed and more products are being produced. This has meant that Earth Overshoot Day, a day that marks when demand for ecological resources in a given year exceeds what the earth can regenerate in that year, has increased. The current overshoot day is the 27th of July 2023, which means that from this day onwards, the earth cannot sustain itself from this point onwards. We recorded a great podcast series on this with Anne-Charlotte Mornington from Olio, find out more here

Of course, Earth Overshoot Day differs from country to county but still paints a bleak picture. But what does this all mean? In short, it means we all must take action. There are lots of actions that we can take every day from planting trees to recycling our plastic bottles. 

Most people know about these types of actions, but there seems to be a gap between intention and action that we want to highlight. The intention-action gap simply refers to the difference between what people say they want to do compared to what they actually do. Factors such as cost or inconvenience are often big barriers to action, but these need to be overcome in relation to saving the planet.

Last year we wrote a report on the sustainability intention action gap and it identified that 77% of the respondents acknowledged the importance of changing their lifestyles to enhance their sustainability. This shows that there is an appetite for change, it just needs to be more easily accessible. You can download the report to find out more here.

We didn’t want this blog post to be all doom and gloom, but equally, we didn’t want to be completely over-optimistic. However, what we did want to highlight is some of the amazing people within the sustainability space that are really trying to make a difference and decrease that overshoot day. We are lucky enough to be able to talk to a load of those people via our podcast, Igniting Change, which you can listen to here.

So perhaps you have got to the bottom of this blog post, and maybe even listened to a few episodes of the podcast and you are thinking to yourself, ok, what can I do next? On the 20th of April, we are hosting an event that is focused on how technology could really help the environment and how businesses are utilizing tech for good to make the world a better place.

Within our report, it found that over half (52%) of the respondents want to embrace technology as a tool to help boost sustainable living, which is why we think it is essential to be talking to our panel of experts from Honest Ocean and Hubbub about how technology can be an enabler.

Published on April 14, 2023, last updated on September 19, 2023

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