Biocapacity is shorthand for biological capacity, which is the ability of an ecosystem to produce useful biological materials and to absorb carbon dioxide emissions.

Source:  Global Footprint Network (2014)


Biodiversity generally refers to the variety of life on Earth. One of the most widely used definitions defines it in terms of the variability within species, between species and between ecosystems.It is a measure of the variety of organisms present in different ecosystems.


Brundtland Report

The year 1983 the United Nations Environment and Development Commission, which was chaired by the Norwegian prime minister Gro Harlem Brundtland, started to develop a guidance for sustainable development. (Hauff 1987)

In 1987, the so-called Brundland report “Our Future together” was published with three principles: “the global perspective, the inseparable link between environmental and development aspects and the realization of justice both in the intergenerational perspective (responsibility for the future) and the intragenerative perspective (Responsibility for today´s society)”

Source: Armin Grunwald & Jürgen Kopfmüller (2006). Nachhaltigkeit. Frankfurt/Main: Campus Verlag GmbH.

Cradle to Cradle

“The cradle-to-cradle approach to design was developed by William McDonough, a notable architect in sustainable buildings, and chemist Michael Braungart in 2002.

It is a method used to minimize the environmental impact of products by employing sustainable production, operation, and disposal practices and aims to incorporate social responsibility into product development. Under the cradle-to-cradle philosophy, products are evaluated for sustainability and efficiency in manufacturing processes, material properties, and toxicity as well as potential to reuse materials through recycling or composting.”


Earth Overshoot Day

“Earth Overshoot Day marks the date when humanity’s demand for ecological resources and services in a given year exceeds what Earth can regenerate in that year. We maintain this deficit by liquidating stocks of ecological resources and accumulating waste, primarily carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Earth Overshoot Day is hosted and calculated by Global Footprint Network, […].

Quelle: Earth Overshoot Day

Ecological Footprint

In 1994 William E. Rees and Mathis Wackernagel created a measurement of the “ecological footprint”.

An ecological footprint is a measure of human impact on Earth’s ecosystems. It’s typically measured in area of wilderness or amount of natural capital consumed each year. A common way of estimating footprint is, the area of wilderness of both land and sea needed to supply resources to a human population; This includes the area of wilderness needed to assimilate human waste.

Test Ecological Footprint:

Source: Wackernagel, Mathis & Beyers, Bert (2010). Der Egological Footprint. Die Welt neu vermessen. Leipzig: Europäische Verlagsanstalt GmbH.  and Wikipedia

FSC (Forest Stewardship Council)

The FSC label which is produced for wood as well as other products made out of paper is an indicator  for responsibility  of  forest management. Products with this label make sure that the usage of forests is aligned with the  social, economical and ecological requirements of our generation and future generation. The label also guarantees that the product is not mixed with non-controlled and non certified paper or wood.


Source (translated): FSC – Deutschland  
Image-source: FSC

Overshoot Phenomenon

“Humans  catch  more fish than the fishing grounds can give which permanently dismisses more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere  than that which can be absorbed as the ecosystem . In some regions , more trees are cut down than grown and pumping more water from the soil than is collected again from the groundwater. ”


Source (translated): Wackernagel, Mathis & Beyers, Bert (2010). Der Egological Footprint. Die Welt neu vermessen. Leipzig: Europäische Verlagsanstalt GmbH. 


“Recycling describes the methodology in which during the producation process, reusable material can be restored. The recycling of waste products in the recycling cycle needs the expenditure of energy and is also due to a wide range of material (eg. plastic) with a gradual loss of quality which is also called Downcycling”


Source (translated): Upcycle Me (2016)

Renewable energy

Renewable energy  as apposed to fossil fuels  is generally defined as energy that is collected from resources which are naturally replenished on a human timescale, such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides, waves, and geothermal heat. (wikipedia)

Sustainable Development

“Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.“

Source: WECD – World Commission on Enviroment and Development (1987). Our common future. Qxford: Oxford University Press.

The Global Goals For Sustainable Development

“In September 2015, 193 world leaders agreed to 17 Global Goals for Sustainable Development. If these Goals are completed, it would mean an end to extreme poverty, inequality and climate change by 2030.”


“Upcycling defines the process  in which waste materials, useless and/or unwanted products are turned into new materials or products of better quality  or for better environmental value. This method supports the long-term reducation of  unnecessary waste.”

The focus of upcycling is rethinking and redesigning  our daily resources in order to give it a higher value. Upcycling allows us to be creative and create individual pieces which support our environment.

Source (translated): Upcycle Me (2016)