As an update on the Perfect Storm a group of 28 internationally renowned scientists have just announced a ‘safe planetary operating space´ that will allow humanity to continue to develop and thrive for generations to come. See the video introduction.
The Nine boundaries include climate change, stratospheric ozone, land use change, freshwater use, biological diversity, ocean acidification, nitrogen and phosphorus inputs to the biosphere and oceans, aerosol loading and chemical pollution. Three of these boundaries (climate change, biological diversity and nitrogen input to the biosphere) may already have been transgressed and the boundaries are strongly connected — crossing one boundary may seriously threaten the ability to stay within safe levels of the others.
The concept will be the subject of an upcoming book by environmental author Mark Lynas, whose previous climate change book Six Degrees won the Royal Society prize in 2008. Katherine Richardson, co-author of the scientific article, emphasises the huge potential for mankind to be more proactive and prevent us doing irreparable damage to the environment. If we respect these boundaries then all will be well. If we don’t then collapse is inevitable.