The 2012 edition of the LPR highlights the tremendous pressure that humanity is putting on our planet. We are using 50 per cent more resources than the Earth can provide. By 2030, even two planets will not be enough.

Our natural capital is declining and our Ecological Footprint is increasing. Urgent action is needed to ensure that we can live in harmony with nature.

All I care about, and cherish, is on this one planet.

It is my home, the home of my family and friends, and the home of another 7 billion people. It is also the home of beautiful forests, mountains, savannahs, oceans, lakes and rivers and of all of the species living within. Our planet is beautiful, but our planet is also fragile.

We have the ability to save our home, to protect our planet. Not only for our own benefit but, above all, for generations to come. We have the solutions. Everyone can make a contribution by making better choices in how we govern, produce and consume. Taking better care of the planet is in our hands.

- André Kuipers, Astronaut, European Space Agency

ESA astronaut Andre Kuipers shares his passion for our living planet.

7 billion expectations, one planet

Human population dynamics are a major driving force behind environmental degradation. One aspect of this is the overall size of the global population, which has more than doubled since 1950 - to 7 billion in 2011 and is forecast to reach just over 9.3 billion people by 2050.

Rising consumption trends in high-income groups around the world and in BRIICS countries, combined with growing population numbers, provide warning signs of the potential for even larger footprints in the future.

We can create more just and equitable societies - providing food, water and energy for all - through the sustainable management of the Earth’s natural capital.