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Re: magic formula
I'd like to look at your question from the other end.
According to the book "Our Ecological Footpint" (Wackermagel & Rees)
the total land surface divided by current population (as of a few years
ago) gives an answer of 1.5 hectares per person. So, I guess, rather
than asking how much land do I need, you could start by acknowledging
that morally (ie you have the same rights as everyone else - and they
have the same rights as you), you have the right to 1.5 hectares per
Unfortunately much of that 1.5 is under ice, desert, tramac or concrete
or on top of high mountains - in terms of productive land - you only
have the right to 0.25 hectares!!!!
This is not just to grow all your food, but also you need to use this
area to collect your water (maybe you could use part of your share of
tarmac for that!!), treat all the wastes you produce and to grow enough
forest to recapture the CO2 released from your enery consumption.
The Ecological Footprint for USA, in general is 4.8. In other words as
well as using their own share, USA citizens are using ALL of the share
of a more than two other people as well - hence the poverty in the
world!!!! (Note Canada is not far behind USA, with Germany,
UK,Japan......Australia not far behind)
Obviously your .25 hectare share is an average, and averages are...well
averages. If you choose land with good soil, water, climate etc, then I
guess you should be using your .25 to support more than one person, as
other sites are clearly not as favourable.
The Ecological Footprint concept/calculation is obviously a somewhat
crude/macro level instrument - lets not take the figures too literally
or too far - BUT it does give an interesting perspective to your
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