Tool Measures Human Impact on the Earth - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Tool Measures Human Impact on the Earth

YAKIMA, Wash -- Everyday mailboxes are stuffed with junk mail. In America alone, catalogs and other direct mailings account for over five million tons of waste each year.

According to the Center for the New America Dream, America is the world leader in consumption. To maintain our lifestyles, the average American is supported by almost 24 acres of earth resources.

If everyone in the world consumed as much as Americans, we'd need more than four earths to supply all of the necessary resources.

A new tool is helping teach Americans about their impact on the earth.

"An Eco-footprint is a way of measuring our footprint upon the earth," said JoAnn Showalter. 

Scientists developed the Eco-footprint measurement to calculate the amount of earth we each use, and throw out.