EDSC 350ADVANCED TOPICS IN BIOLOGY FOR TEACHERS ECOLOGICAL FOOTPRINTS OF UNITED ARAB EMIRATES AND PHILIPPINES: A REVIEW by Nenita S . Delos Santosnenita.email@example.comPhD in Education major in BiologyUniversity of the Philippines – Open University
Table of ContentsAbstract1. Introduction2. Ecological Footprint as an Indicator of Sustainability3. The Global Context4. Ecological Footprint of the United Arab Emirates (UAE)5. Ecological Footprint of the Philippines6. Ecological Footprint Towards 20507. ConclusionsBibliography
1. IntroductionAll human activities make use of ecosystem services whichare putting pressure on the biodiversity that support theseservices. Since the first Living Planet Report (LPR) was published in1998, measures of the trends in the state of globalbiodiversity trough the Living Planet Index (LPI) showed adecline of almost 30 percent between 1970 and 2007.In 2002, under the auspices of the Convention on BiologicalDiversity (CBD) the leaders of the world’s governmentscommitment to significantly halt the rate of biodiversity lossby 2010, adopted a suite of indicators, brought together asthe Biodiversity Indicators Partnership (BIP), to provideinformation on biodiversity trends and assess progresstoward their target. Global Footprint Network (GFN) is a BIP Key Indicator Partner, and the Ecological Footprint has been officially adopted by the CBD to beincluded among its biodiversity indicators.
1. IntroductionBy measuring the Footprint of a population or all ofhumanity we can assess our pressure on theplanet, which helps us manage our ecological assetsmore wisely and take personal and collective action insupport of a world where humanity lives within theEarth’s bounds.Ecological Footprint (EF) is the world’s premier measureof human demand on the Earth’s ecosystems, rooted inthe fact that all renewable resources come from the earth.Conceived in 1990 by Mathis Wackernagel and WilliamRees, it is an accounting framework by comparing humandemand against the regenerative capacity of the Earth.While not a direct measure of species populations, theEcological Footprint provides an indicator of the pressureon ecosystems and biodiversity by measuring thecompeting level of ecological demand that humans placeupon the biosphere.
1. IntroductionAn estimate of Earth’s latest humanity’s footprint (1961-2007)is 18 billion gha or 2.7 gha per person (5). This represents anecological overshoot of 50 percent or an equivalent of 1.5years for the Earth to regenerate the renewable resourcespeople use and includes the space needed for infrastructureand vegetation to absorb waste carbon dioxide(CO2). Moderate UN scenarios suggest that if currentpopulation and consumption trends continue, by the2030s, we will need the equivalent of two Earths to supportus.
2. Ecological Footprint as an Indicator of SustainabilityEcological footprint analysis is a tool that wasdeveloped to measure whether a given country orregion was using resources at a rate faster thannature can regenerate them. In 2000, WWFInternational published the first Living PlanetReport, using ecological foot printing as a way tomeasure human pressure on Earth and how thispressure is distributed among countries.Since then, the methodology for calculating the EcologicalFootprint has been further developed and many variationsand enhancements have been described in the literature.The 4 broader categories of methodologies are the following:1. Conventional Ecological Footprint Accounting2. Variations of the conventional method (non input-output based)3. Dynamic Ecological Footprint models4. Input-output based methods
2. Ecological Footprint as an Indicator of SustainabilityConventional Ecological Footprint Accounting – basis of thecurrent EF definition provided by GFN.• Usually measured in global hectares which is the annualproductivity of 1 hectare of biologically productive land orsea with world-average productivity.• Use data from the UN Food and Agricultural Organizationon domestic production, imports, exports and yields for anumber of primary and secondary products fromagricultural, forestry and fisheries to calculate the apparentnet consumption of a nation and associated appropriation ofland.• Experts believed that EF indicator is limited in its scope; itcannot answer how long ecological overshoot will bepossible and possible for what. Hence, it is a strongcommunication tool but have a limited role within policycontext.
3. The Global Context Humanity’s Ecological Footprint (1961-2007) Total Ecological Footprint by Land Type
2. The Global ContextUnited Arab Emirates (UAE) Philippines Ecological Footprint by Country per person, 2007
4. Ecological Footprint of the UAEOwing to the capitalization of its oil and gasresources, the UAE is a rapidly developing country thatis investing heavily in construction, infrastructuredevelopment, provision of water, electricity and food.Apart from energy and the sun, the UAE is a hot anddry country, which extremely limited natural resourcesare being exhausted hence significant quantities arebeing imported from overseas to satisfy demand. In the Living Planet Report 2006, based on the 2003 data, the UAE ranked as the country with the highest per capita Ecological Footprint in the world at almost 12 gha per person.Based on the Living Planet Report 2010, the UAE out of 152countries had the world’s highest per capita EnvironmentalFootprint at 10.68 global hectares (gha) perperson, although the data relates to the year 2007 andrepresents just 0.3% o f humanity’s total EcologicalFootprint.
4. Ecological Footprint of the UAEThis has prompted UAE to embark on in-depthresearch to understand and manage its EcologicalFootprint through the Al Basma Al Beeiyah Initiative(Ecological Footprint Initiative), making it as the thirdcountry in the world with similar effort that followedJapan and Switzerland (12), and the first to developscientific achievement to address the problem.UAE’s Al Basma Al Beeiyah Initiative (EcologicalFootprint Initiative) The initiative was launched in October 2007 through a unique partnership with the Ministry of Environment and Water (MOEW), Environmental Agency - Abu Dhabi Global Environmental Data Initiative (AGEDI) Emirates Wildlife Society in association with World Wildlife Fund (EWS-WWF) and the Global Footprint Network (GFN).
4. Ecological Footprint of the UAE UAE Footprint by three players of UAE Footprint by Land Type society (based on 2008 LPR data) (based on 2008 LPR data) Scenario A (38.4%) Scenario B (14.9%) Scenario C (11.6%) Scenario A (38.4%) Scenario B Scenario CFour nuclear power Four nuclear power Four nuclear power Indoor and outdoorplants of capacity 1.45 plants of capacity 1.45 plants of capacity 1.45 water equipmentGW by 2021 GW by 2021 GW by 2021 standard15% Renewable Energy 15% Renewable Energy 15% Renewable Energy 50% Electric VehicleCapacity by 2020 Capacity by 2020 Capacity by 2020 penetration by 203010% Carbon Capture 10% Carbon Capture 10% Carbon Capture Reverse Osmosis –and Sequestration by and Sequestration by and Sequestration by installation of2030 2030 2030 thirteen 60 MGStrong Building 200% increase in desalinationEnvelope Standard Electricity and Water plants (2018-2030)with60% reduction in Tarff by 2030 100% TSE reuse bycooling demand 2030High End energy starequipment standard
4. Ecological Footprint of the UAEIn Year One, the EFI focused on evaluation theusefulness of the EF indicator and itsrepresentativeness of the UAE context. This wasdone through data and methodology type.In Year Two, the EFI concluded that the footprint is infact a useful representative tool for identifying themajor footprint-driving sectors.In Year Three, the EFI continued its researchthrough the development of an electricity andwater scenario model designed to show how thedevelopment of the power and water sector mightaffect the UAE’s EF up to 2030, and to help buildlower-footprint alternative scenarios.
5. Ecological Footprint of the PhilippinesFrom 1961, the Philippines demand on ecologicalresources increased from less than its ownbiocapacity to more than double its domesticallyavailable biocapacity in 2002.Based on 2007 data from the GFN published in2010, the Philippines EF was 1.3 global hectaresper person which is slightly higher than theecological deficit of 0.9 global hectares perperson (6 billion in total). Philippines Demand vs. Biocapacity (1961-2002)
5. Ecological Footprint of the Philippines Philippines Footprint by Component (1961-2002)From 1961, the Philippines demand on ecologicalresources increased from less than its own biocapacityto more than double its domestically availablebiocapacity in 2002.Based on 2007 data from the GFN published in 2010, thePhilippines EF was 1.3 global hectares per person whichis slightly higher than the ecological deficit of 0.9 globalhectares per person (6 billion in total).
5. Ecological Footprint of the Philippines Philippines Footprint and Biocapacity (1961-2002) Philippines Footprint by Component (1961-2002)
6. Ecological Footprint Towards 2050The 2008 Living Planet Report introduced three“solution wedges” - energy efficiency, renewableenergy and carbon capture and storage that couldreduce the accumulation of atmospheric CO2 andtherefore the carbon footprint. The GlobalFootprint Network has since taken this analysis astep further by creating a Footprint ScenarioCalculator.Based on the LPR 2010, land competition is likely tobe a greater challenge in the future.Efforts of agriculturalists may be balanced out byclimate change or have their uptake restricted bysocioeconomic factors and governance.Cities remains to account for an ever-higherpercentage in the coming years
7. ConclusionsEcological Footprint is a powerful tool that measuresthe amount of biologically productive land and waterarea required to produce the resources anindividual, population or activity consumes and toabsorb the waste they generate, given prevailingtechnology and resource management – in snapshots.The need to standardize sub-national Footprintapplication methods in order to increase theircomparability across studies and over time isessential.UAE Initiatives for a low EF future is commendable.Although the current EF of Philippines is considerablylower than UAE the need to overcomeeconomic, environmental and personnel constraints inorder to reduce the environmental footprint remains tobe a big challenge.