What is ecological footprint?
If you had to provide everything you use from your own land — how much land area would you need? This land would have to provide you with all of your food, water, energy and everything else that you use. The amount of land you would need to support your lifestyle is called your Ecological Footprint. The ecological footprint is one way of measuring the impact a person has on the environment.
An ecological footprint measures how much people take from nature. The footprint is then compared to the amount of natural resources nature can renew. More simply, footprint calculations answer the questions: how much nature do we have? And how much do we use?
Why is it so important?
Humanity is using nature about 1.7 times faster than nature renews itself. It is like using 1.7 planet Earths. Since people live differently around the world, it is also possible to calculate how many planet it would take if everybody around the world consumed like a particular population. For instance, if everybody consumed like the Germans, it would take nearly 3 planet Earths.
Is the World Big Enough for All of Our BIG Feet?
The size of a person’s Ecological Footprint will depend on many factors. Do you grow your own food? Do you walk or drive? Do you use renewable or non-renewable energy sources? Everyone has an ecological footprint because we all need to use the earth’s resources to survive. But we must make sure we don’t take more resources than the earth can provide. Different people in the same country will have different sized ecological footprints. Different countries also have different ecological footprints. For example, a person with the average Canadian lifestyle has an ecological footprint of 8.56 hectares. A person living in Ethiopia, Africa, has an average ecological footprint of 0.67 hectares.
What can I do?
One method of calculating your ecological footprint is the Ecological Footprint Calculator hosted by Earth Day Network. This calculator has some simple questions that are used to calculate your ecological footprint. Go to www.earthday.org and click on Your Ecological Footprint (online survey).
Solution is to come back to Sunnah!
Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) left a noble example of being eco-friendly and going green in his life. He spent his entire life in an eco-friendly effort, helping humankind, caring for other creatures of God, preserving the earth, planting trees and protecting the environment
Eco-friendly nature of Islam
There are more such beautiful traditions of the Prophet that serve as gentle reminders for us to reflect on Islam as an environment-friendly faith. These Sunnah remind us to care for all creatures, to protect the environment, to conserve water, to preserve the nature and to care for all living beings, including trees and animals.
One day Prophet (s.a.w.) passed by Sa`d ibn Abi Waqas (r.a) while he was performing wudu’. The Prophet (saw) asked Sa`d: “What is this wastage?” Sa`d replied: “Is there wastage in wudu also?” The Prophet said, “Yes, even if you are at a flowing river.”(Ibn Majah)
Considering tree-planting a renewable source of reward, the Prophet said: “If a Muslim plants a tree or sows seeds, and then a bird, or a person or an animal eats from it, it is regarded as a charitable gift (sadaqah) for him.” (Bukhari)
Similarly, the Prophet (saw) gave paramount importance to street clean-ups, when he said: “Removing harmful things from the road is an act of charity (sadaqah).” (Narrated by Abu Dharr Al-Ghafari, Riyadh As Saliheen)