Our lives have been shaped by a civilization over 10,000 years in the making, only made possible by a stable climate. That’s changing. The world is getting hotter—floods, fires, droughts, pollution and crop failures are becoming more severe and disrupting lives all over the world. We are officially in the Anthropocene: the age of humans, because we are now the primary drivers of change on planet earth.
World-renowned scientist Johan Rockström and his team have identified the nine planetary boundaries essential to sustaining our life on earth. These limits are the keys to preserving the stable environment we’ve depended on for over 10,000 years. The planetary boundaries range from climate change and the loss of species to ozone layer depletion and ocean acidification. We’re pushing to the edge of many of these boundaries. But now that science has shown us the limits, we can also see the way forward to building a healthier and more sustainable world.
The scientific discoveries presented in Breaking Boundaries shine a light on the path we can take to ensure a safe and thriving world.
Our planetary boundaries are defined by tipping points - the moment when climate change, loss of nature and pollution move beyond the point of no return and we lose all control. When polar ice caps go from cooling the earth, to heating it faster. When the Amazon tips from carbon reducing friend to carbon emitting foe. Now is the time to restore nature, reduce emissions and prevent irreversible changes to our planet.
We need a stable climate and a healthy natural world to keep our economies functioning, our jobs secure and our countries peaceful. Our role as drivers of change on the planet brings with it great responsibility for all of us. We need governments, companies and individuals across the planet to unite in a global effort. Whether it’s choosing a product, changing our lifestyles or influencing those in power to act, what we do really counts.