Ecological footprinting is an accounting tool that seeks to quantify the biological capacity that is required to support human activity. It has been used at the city or country level, but as yet it has not been applied at the lowest level of economic activity – the business enterprise. In order to assess its usefulness the technique is reviewed alongside other management tools for assessing the environmental performance of commercial organizations. This will then enable the business to develop environmental management systems and strategies to improve environmental performance and eco-efficiency. Copyright © 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.