2020, the year of lessons, has come up with another reminder revealing the extent of exploitation caused to nature by humanity.
A study has revealed that the mass of everything made by humans which includes buildings, roads, and machines now outweighs the mass of all living things on Earth.
Scientists on Wednesday, December 9, said that their research has suggested that this year could be the "crossover point" at which humanity's footprint is heavier than that of the natural world.
The study, published in the scientific journal Nature, said that the human footprint has been increasing in size rapidly since the beginning of the 20th century, doubling every 20 years. Research also shows that on average, every person in the world is responsible for the creation of human-made matter equal to more than their body weight each week.
The human-made mass has surpassed the overall weight of biomass, estimated to be roughly 1,100,000,000,000 tons or 1.1 teratonnes, a benchmark scientists state is an enormous impact that humans have had on the planet.
The research estimated the changes in global biomass and manmade mass since 1990 to state that the mass of human-produced objects stood at just three percent of the weight of the biomass at the start of the 20th century.
However, the post-World War II era led to a boom of several industries and a rise in global production and consumption patterns.
"This study provides a sort of 'big picture' snapshot of the planet in 2020," said co-author Ron Milo of the Plant and Environmental Sciences Department at Israel's Weizmann Institute of Science.
At the current growth rate, manmade material is likely to weigh as much as three teratonnes by 2040.