Reduce Your Ecological Footprint


Planting 350 million hectares of forests would delay World Overshoot Day by 8 days.

The survival of humanity and our quality of life depend on the health of our planet's biological resources. Fertile soil, clean water, and air are necessary for our physical health and to produce food. Flourishing natural ecosystems, such as oceans and forests, play a crucial role in sustaining life on Earth by regulating the climate and absorbing carbon emissions.

Due to the excessive consumption of biological resources, economies are now limited by the Earth's biocapacity. To ensure a healthy planet that can sustain us now and in the future, we must reduce our resource consumption while also preserving our planet's ecosystems. The good news is that there are already solutions to improve the health of our ecosystems and the planet's capacity to regenerate biological resources, and we can achieve this in three ways.

Environmental conservation

Numerous organisations have dedicated themselves to supporting these efforts, with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) being a prominent example. The WWF has worked to strengthen regional and national park systems, as well as partnering with other organisations to secure easements on private and public lands for environmental conservation.

Numerous organisations have dedicated themselves to supporting these efforts, with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) being a prominent example. The WWF has worked to strengthen regional and national park systems, as well as partnering with other organisations to secure easements on private and public lands for environmental conservation.

For example, in the province of Guanacaste in Costa Rica, deforestation for livestock grazing has caused land degradation. Now, some of these lands have been reforested. Similar efforts have been made around the world, from China to Ethiopia. Restoring tropical forests and mangroves has triple benefits, as it increases biodiversity, sequesters carbon dioxide, and acts as a flood barrier for urban coastal areas in tropical and subtropical regions. Trees have been at the centre of the youth organisation Plant for the Planet, which led to their ambitious campaign One Trillion Trees

There are also examples of good forest management practices in Slovenia. One such example is the Pahernik Foundation, which manages the Pahernik forests in Pohorje. They adhere to the principles of sustainability, multifunctionality, and sustainability. They take care of 570 hectares of forest, of which 331 hectares are part of the Nature 2000 area. The basis of sustainable forestry is that there is no significant change in the ecosystem after logging and it looks and operates as it did before. At the same time, forest rejuvenation takes place through the constant introduction of young trees and maintaining a certain amount of dead wood, habitat trees, and tree microhabitats that help preserve biodiversity.

Regenerative agriculture and sustainable fishing

To sustainably feed the world's population, agriculture must prioritise soil fertility, groundwater levels, water cycles, and genetic diversity while avoiding pollution. Regenerative agriculture is now a global movement, with numerous exciting examples, like the one from Patagonia. Additionally, sustainable fishing is crucial for maintaining the overall health of our oceans and ensuring that they remain full for future generations. Seafood is the main source of protein for about 3 billion people, particularly in low-income countries. Given that oceans currently absorb 30% of our carbon emissions, reducing emissions is necessary to mentain their health.


These solutions are in line with Sustainable Development Goals 14 and 15, which call for the conservation and sustainable use of the oceans, seas and marine resourcesas well as protection, restoration and promotion of sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems , sustainable management of forests, combatting desertification, and halting and reversing land degradation and halt biodiversity loss.


In 2050, it is projected that 70 to 80% of the world's population will reside in urban areas, making it imperative to pursue sustainable living practices in cities. 

Effective urban planning and development strategies are critical in managing resources and avoiding excessive consumption of natural resources. Examples of such strategies include energy-efficient buildings, zoned developments (e.g. residential, industrial), efficient public transport, and the use of non-motorised transportation.

Sustainable cities and communities are among the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to be achieved by 2030. The 11th SDG aims to ensure that cities and settlements are open, safe, resilient, and sustainable. In the European Union, progress towards enriching the quality of life in cities and communities, promoting sustainable transport, and mitigating harmful environmental impacts are primarily monitored through indicators. You can track the changing indicators for Slovenia on the website of the Statistical Office.


Personal transportation accounts for as much as 17% of the world's carbon footprint..

The planning of cities can have a significant impact on our reliance on personal vehicles. This is critical as personal transportation contributes up to 17% of the world's carbon footprint..

Are you familiar with the impact of traffic on air quality and your health? The amount you are spending on your mobility and vehicle maintenance? Find answers to these questions and more in the publication Na pot v zeleni prestavi (available only in Slovene).

Take action by visiting your city's website and urging city leaders to support sustainable policies aimed at reducing the ecological footprint.

Air transportation is responsible for 5% of CO₂ emissions. It is projected that the number of passengers transported globally in domestic and international air travel will increase from 3.8 billion to 10 billion by 2040.

What can you do?

– Choose public transportation, cycling, walking, or other forms of active mobility for commuting or running errands. You will do something good for your health and the environment, and save money as well!

– How much does your car cost you? Make sure your car is always full of passengers so you can share costs and the carbon footprint.

– If public transportation is not competitive enough, use the nearest P+R parking lot (e.g. Ljubljana).

– Avoid air travel, especially for shorter distances (<800 km). When flying, offset your carbon footprint. Otherwise, the best way to offset your carbon footprint from air travel is to avoid flying altogether.

– Would you be willing to replace your old car with an electric one? Electric vehicles are proven to be more environmentally friendly. Check out subsidies and favourable loans for buying an electric car at Ekosklad.

– Do you live in the city and having your own car is not really worth it? You can rent a car or use Avant2Gowhen you need it. Car sharing contributes to reducing the carbon footprint because electric vehicles are included in the project, and the user can rent a car only when they really need it. Deljenje avtomobila oziroma “car sharing” prispeva k zmanjšanju ogljičnega odtisa, saj so v projekt vključena električna vozila, uporabnik pa si lahko avtomobil izposodi le takrat, ko ga zares potrebuje.

– Would you like to do something for your health on your way to work? Check if bike rental is available in your city, which can be dropped off at different locations. BicikeLJoffers this service in Ljubljana, while KRsKOLESOMis available in Kranj, a sustainable means of transportation in the municipality. There are 29 stations spread throughout the municipality where you can rent regular or electric bikes. 


The carbon footprint accounts for 57% of humanity's ecological footprint.

The most effective way to address climate change and bring balance to our ecological footprint and the planet's renewable resources is to reduce carbon emissions from the economy. To meet the Paris Agreement's commitment made in 2015, carbon neutrality must be achieved before 2050. The Paris Agreement aims to keep the global average temperature increase below 2°C compared to pre-industrial levels, with a goal of limiting the increase to 1.5°C, which would significantly reduce the risks of climate change. All member countries of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) signed the Paris Agreement.

In order to reach our goal, we need to limit the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. But what is the threshold that we must not exceed? 

The amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere is measured in parts per million (ppm), which represents one molecule of greenhouse gas per one million molecules of air. According to the reports by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the concentration of long-lasting atmospheric greenhouse gases, measured in CO₂ equivalents, should be significantly below 350 ppm to meet the Paris Agreement target. As of 2020, the atmosphere had an average concentration of over 413 ppm CO₂. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), a US government agency responsible for monitoring the climate, reports that the concentration of CO₂ equivalents, including all other greenhouse gases, reached 500 ppm in 2019. Furthermore, the current carbon footprint is adding 2 to 3 ppm to the atmosphere each year. You can track CO₂ levels here.

To achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement, we need to abandon the use of fossil fuels well before 2050, given the already high and still-rising concentrations of greenhouse gases. Fortunately, there are several technically feasible and financially viable solutions available today, with environmental and financial benefits that could be visible immediately. Commercial technologies already exist for buildings, industrial processes, and electricity generation , making it possible to reduce our carbon footprint by 50% within the ecological footprint of humanity. This would reduce the amount of resources needed to sustain our needs to 1.1 planet Earth, compared to the current consumption rate of 1.6 planet Earth. To achieve sustainability, we must develop within the limited natural resource budget of our planet. One of the UN's sustainable development goals is affordable and clean energy, which calls for a significant increase in the share of renewable energy in global energy production by 2030. 

What can you do?

– To reduce energy consumption by 6%, maintain a room temperature of 20–22°C. What's the temperature in your home?

Assessyour home's energy efficiency. Is it time to upgrade your insulation or consider renewable heating sources like solar power? Check Ekosklad for subsidies and affordable loans for green home investments.

– Get free energy advice by calling 080 16 69 (Ekosklad).

– Don't forget that electronic devices consume energy even when not in use. Check the efficiency of your appliances to reduce energy waste.

– Explore strategies for thriving within our planet's limited resources in the Strategies for One-Planet Prosperity.

– For energy-efficient tips that save money and the planet, visit visit


Food production uses up half of the Earth's biocapacity.

Two sustainable development goals are directly related to food: Goal 2 (Zero Hunger) and Goal 12 (Responsible Consumption and Production).

The key challenges in addressing food supply, malnutrition, and hunger (SDG 2) are:

Ineffectiveness of resources in food production

The production of animal-based food is significantly less resource-efficient than that of plant-based food. As a response, the Chinese government has committed to reducing meat consumption by 50% by 2030. This reduction would result in a 377 million global hectare decrease in humanity's ecological footprint and a 5-day delay in World Overshoot Day (including methane emissions). Additionally, agriculture is currently a major consumer of fossil fuels, with the production of one calorie of meat in Belgium requiring five calories of fossil fuels.

Food waste

Despite a global food crisis, one-third of the world's food produced for human consumption (equivalent to 1.3 billion tons per year) is wasted, with high and low-income countries discarding similar amounts, according to the UN. In Slovenia, we generate 131,800 tons of food wasteannually, while the US wastes about 40% of its food, equivalent to the entire ecological footprint of Sweden and Colombia combined or the entire biocapacity of Bolivia. This highlights the urgent need to address the issue of food waste to ensure food security and a sustainable future for our planet.

The 12th goal of the UN Sustainable Development Goals is to halve global food waste per capita at the retail and consumer levels by 2030 and reduce food losses in production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses.

If food waste was halved on a global scale, World Overshoot Day would be postponed by 12 days. here.

More and more countries are becoming reliant on imported food, leading to a global specialisation in food production that can enhance efficiency but also decrease the resilience of food systems, particularly in countries with low incomes that are net food importers. These countries are particularly vulnerable to food shocks. 

Furthermore, importing food increases the carbon footprint created by the transportation of raw materials and food. Food that is locally produced and in season has a lower ecological footprint. In Slovenia, the ecological footprint of food consumption is 0.63 gha, which accounts for 14% of the total ecological footprint..

What can you do?

– Reduce your consumption of red meat and opt for white meat or vegetarian alternatives. The production of one tonne of beef requires 14 times more biologically productive land than the production of one ton of grain. This change can benefit your health as well.

– Choose locally sourced and minimally processed foods with less packaging. Consider visiting stores that offer packaging-free options, such as in Ljubljana, Slovenia. These stores aim to raise awareness about the negative impact of single-use packaging on the environment, reduce carbon footprint, and educate suppliers and providers about eco-friendly transportation Ljubljana, Slovenia. These stores aim to raise awareness about the negative impact of single-use packaging on the environment, reduce carbon footprint, and educate suppliers and providers about eco-friendly transportation methods.

– Select seasonal foods to reduce the carbon footprint of your diet. Consuming strawberries in winter or avocados from another part of the world results in a higher carbon footprint of the product.

– Minimise food waste to avoid wasting energy. Plan your weekly meals carefully, taking into account the ingredients you already have in your fridge that need to be used before they go bad.

– Consider composting if you have the opportunity to do so.


Consumption of goods and services is a major factor contributing to global resource use and its resulting environmental impacts.

Instead of fast fashion, can we choose more sustainable clothing items? Can we borrow or rent a certain product instead of buying a new one? Can we be mindful while shopping and avoid products that contribute to poor living conditions for people in other parts of the world? 

Asking these kinds of questions can help us become a part of the solution, and here are some examples of good practices:

Reborn by Gizzmo

The company Gizzmo, through its brand Reborn® , is actively reducing its ecological impact. Each phone refurbishment saves 98,936 litres of water and up to 200 grams of hazardous waste that would otherwise pollute the environment. Compared to the production of a new phone, the CO2 emissions during refurbishment are 80% lower. They also promote recycling and aim to minimise their own ecological footprint. Their stores use only easily degradable bags made of recycled paper, and they ship packages in boxes made of recycled paper. Additionally, if a customer chooses eco-friendly packaging for their order, they plant a tree in their name. They encourage customers to recycle and offer a 20% discount on a new case or phone glass when a customer discards them in one of their stores. Customers also receive a 10% discount when they bring waste batteries or other hazardous waste to one of Gizzmo's stores. Gizzmo has been operating since 2013, and their Reborn® phones are available in Slovenia and Croatia. 

Štacuna Brvač

Štacuna Brvač (Brvač store) is one of seven shops that have emerged as part of the social enterprise of the Vincenc Draksler Foundation. The store is located in the building of the Central Wastewater Treatment Plant in Radovljica and began operating in cooperation with the Vincenc Draksler Foundation, the municipality of Radovljica, and the utility company at the end of February 2015. The store offers used and refurbished items at a low symbolic price and new products made in the workshops of the social enterprise in Pristava near Tržič. By focusing on reuse, the store aims to reduce the amount of waste being deposited. When we purchase their products, we reduce the production of new ones and thus decrease the pollution generated during production. Their mission is to prioritise environmental protection and to have a significant impact on sustainable environmental development. The 12th goal of the UN Sustainable Development Goals is to halve global food waste per capita at the retail and consumer levels by 2030 and reduce food losses in production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses.

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