Consumption of superfluous and disposables
Quercus wants less consumption of superfluous and disposables to reduce the ecological footprint.
Quercus advised the Portuguese to reduce the use of superfluous and disposable products and energy, remembering that, if everyone had the average consumption of the Portuguese, 2.3 planets would be needed to provide resources.
“It is quite worrying that the Portuguese have a level of consumption, that is, resource use, a [high] ecological footprint and that 2.3 planets are needed to sustain our standard of living,” the Portuguese news agency said today. president of Quercus.
For João Branco, who referred to the average consumption per inhabitant in the country, Portugal is “clearly having a lifestyle in which it spends more resources than those that the planet gives us”, which he considered to be “unsustainable”.
According to data from the Global Footprint Network, for 2013, the Portuguese ecological footprint was 3.9 global hectares (gha) per person, for a biocapacity (amount of biologically productive area) of only 1.5 gha, which results in a ecological deficit of 2.3 gha, requiring 2.3 planets to feed this rate of consumption.
The environmentalist association chose this theme to mark World Earth Day, which is being celebrated today, and organized symbolic initiatives in Vila Real, Aldeia de Água Formosa (Vila de Rei, in the district of Castelo Branco) and Seia (district of Guarda).
The reduction of animal populations, namely fish, birds, mammals, amphibians or reptiles, of more than 50% in the last 30 to 40 years, is also highlighted by the president of Quercus.
“Even species that are not extinct have fewer and fewer individuals and this is due to the lifestyle that humans have on planet Earth,” he added.
Quercus’ advice to change the situation focuses on changing daily behaviors such as reducing consumption, especially of superfluous and disposable goods, packaging, as well as processed food, as “products are obtained from raw materials and energy from the planet ”.
Reducing consumption or saving energy with small gestures, such as turning off the lights, when they are not needed, or the ‘stand by’ of the devices, can make a difference, according to João Branco.
The environmentalist also defended the recycling of waste to avoid the removal of so many raw materials from nature, since the waste is transformed into material to manufacture new products, an option that is the basis of the circular economy.
As fossil fuels are largely responsible for climate change, “it is very important to reduce the ecological footprint in this area”, with changes in the use of private transport, for example, for small routes that can be done on foot, he also pointed out.
In Vila Real, a workshop on edible wild herbs and fruits will take place, “to show that in nature there are foods that can be collected for free and, many times, we do not know them”, he explained.
In the Botanical Garden of Coimbra an offer and sale of books is foreseen, during the Mercadinho Biológico, in Vila de Rei, a walk for the recognition of edible herbs is organized and in Seia there will be a walk to publicize the Natural Park of Serra da Estrela.
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