Tuesday, October 10, 2006

9 October 2006

Well, this has been a first but it won't last long and it's unlikely to be repeated again. Yes, there I am, at the top of the list of SA (South African) Topsites. I reached that exalted position at about 4 'o clock, yesterday, the 9th of October, 2006.

This was a prime example of how being picked up by some cyberspace heavyweights can spread something round the net like a fire out of control. As fun as it was, I have no illusions about how short-lived this popularity will be. It peaked on Saturday and Sunday when the daily hit rate was almost 18 000 hits. But, despite the hit rate taking until yesterday before it reached the number one spot on SA Topsites, it had already dropped off rather dramatically. Today, it has dropped even more, even though the hit rate is unbelievably higher than usual.

My fifteen minutes of fame lasted fifty hours!

9 October 2006 - Top spot8 October 2006 - Over 17000 hits!!

On a more serious note, 9 October 2006, was the day humanity starts eating the globe:

New calculations released today show that from now until the end of the year we will be living beyond our global environmental means. Research by the US-based Global Footprint Network in partnership with nef and Best Foot Forward reveals that as of today, humanity has used up what nature can renew this year and is now eating into its ‘ecological capital’.

Each year, the day that the global economy starts to operate with an ecological deficit is designated as ‘ecological debt day’ (known internationally as ‘overshoot day’). This marks the date that the planet’s environmental resource flow goes into the red and we begin operating on a non-existent environmental overdraft.

The fact that this year, ecological debt day falls on 9 October, only three quarters of the way through the year, means that we are living well beyond our environmental means. This leads, in effect, to a net depletion of the resources. From October 9 until the end of the year, humanity will be in ecological overshoot, building up ever greater ecological debt by consuming resources beyond the level that the planet’s ecosystems can replace.

The day that we begin living beyond our environmental means is creeping ever earlier in the year as human consumption grows:
  • humanity first went into global ecological debt in 1987, with the first ecological debt day on 19 December that year;
  • by 1995 it had jumped a month forward to 21 November;
  • now, new estimates based on the latest available data indicate that in 2006, we run out of ecological resources today, Monday 9 October.
Mathis Wackernagel, Executive Director, Global Footprint Network says “Humanity is living off its ecological credit card and can only do this by liquidating the planet’s natural resources. While this can be done for a short while, overshoot ultimately leads to the depletion of resources, such as the forests, oceans and agricultural land upon which our economy depends.”

In other words, it now takes more than one year and three months for the Earth to regenerate what we use in a single year. The consequences of this ecological overshoot can be seen most seriously in our rapidly warming climate, but also in deforestation, the collapse of fisheries, species extinction, insecure energy supplies, water shortages and crop failure.

(From NEF - New Economics Foundation)

And, on a possibly more somber note, 11.36 am yesterday, North Korean time, marks the time when the world's last Stalinist state inserted itself into the club of so-called "undeclared" nuclear powers, previously made up of Israel (which still has never admitted having such a capacity), Pakistan and India. While the recorded seismic blast has been low enough for some experts to question if a nuclear blast actually took place, the aftershocks of the claim more than make up for the possibility that the North Koreans are faking it.


Anonymous Daniel said...

does this mean you now get groupies?

2:07 pm  
Anonymous nyasha said...

WOW!!! Number one? Parabéns! o famoso Nomada. ;)
So, now i am curious, you have gotten over the 100 flags barrier, you got to be the SA top site #1, what is your next challenge?

9:27 am  
Blogger Reluctant Nomad said...

daniel: Groupies would be cool but doubt that I'll get proper ones.

nyasha: Muito obrigado, minha amiga especial.

Next challenge? Mmm...not sure. Get a job somewhere in continental Europe, maybe?

12:25 pm  
Blogger Caroline said...

Congrats on your high flying - Mr Icarus...

I don't like the idea that we are now eating ourselves - but if we can't put limits on when we know resources are finiate perhaps we will when they start to shrink.

I keep on wondering which is worse - a country pretending to set off a nuclear explosion or one doing so. It seems to much like they are playing a game... not a good idea... can you think of anyone who boasted about having weapons of mass destruction?

2:27 pm  
Blogger Paul said...

Congrats on your top spot!

The nuclear explosion... are there really doubts it actually took place? But as Caroline says, which is worse? Not a nice situation at all eh?

3:14 pm  
Blogger Babsbitchin said...

It's good to have you back. Mwah!

3:40 pm  
Blogger Terri said...

I'm finding it difficult to take advice from someone with the surname "Wackernagel".
Congrats on the no. 1 spot!!

7:06 pm  
Anonymous nyasha said...

well, if relocating to Continental Europe, make sure it is not the Danish country side... e depois não digas que não te avisei... ;)

10:38 pm  
Blogger Tammy said...

Wow what an honor - you must be so proud - smaak the moment china before it passes quickly :) Seriously - congrats!!

12:12 am  
Anonymous xmichra said...

WOOT! congrats on that milestone!! You may not be there all day, but heck.. that is something to be proud of for sure!!

And... ICK. eating ourselves... *shudders*. I think i like being oblivious!

5:15 am  
Blogger Reluctant Nomad said...

Caroline: Icarus came down with much more of a bump than I’m going to – I hope!

Paul: Thanks. There are doubts but, true, which is worse?

Babsbitchin Mwah right back at you!

Terri: Whose surname is ‘Wackernagel’? Thanks for the congrats.

nyasha: I will listen to your advice very carefully – obrigado.

Tammy: Much more surprised than proud. Thanks.

xmichra: It’s the Internet Roulette what did it rather than anything I’ve done out of the ordinary.

10:37 am  
Blogger Caroline said...

Just so long as you don't get anything spotted with melting wax ;-)

10:51 am  
Anonymous Aquila said...

nice one bro - congrats..still on top a week later.

Any interesting referals?

11:26 am  
Blogger Guyana-Gyal said...

Don't trust the North Koreans, some used to live in Guyana...they were sly, at least, the men were.

7:19 pm  
Blogger Reluctant Nomad said...

aquila: Lots more blogs are linked to me than before and, as a result, have discovered a few that I'll return to regularly.

Now that my spike has dipped so much, even if still getting a LOT more readers than before, I'll have to think of another post to get them back again. Maybe 'Classic Insults 2'?

I'm such a Stats Whore! :-)

guyana: As far as I'm aware, I've never met one.

8:38 pm  

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