The planet’s future is in the balance. But a transformation is already under way

Photos by #EarthStatement
We've reached a tipping point, but a political and scientific revolution could yet safeguard the planet for the future of humanity, Johan Rockström writes.

In an article for The Guardian newspaper, the Executive Director of Stockholm Resilience Centre  and Co-Chair of the Future Earth Transition Team, sets out a positive vision of post-2015 development. 

" Remarkably, 2015 is the make-or-break year and all the signs are there that we are changing course – a great transformation is not only within sight, it is under way. Here’s why. First, world leaders met in New York recently to agree the sustainable development goals – applying equally to all nations. This is a paradigm shift in thinking; it acknowledges for the first time that our wellbeing, the global economy and human development all rely on a stable biosphere and that this very stability is at risk. Second, we have reached “peak child”; the number of children in the world is no longer increasing. Population will eventually stabilise at 10-12 billion. And third, world leaders meet again next month to seek a workable solution to the climate challenge."

"The best evidence from science indicates that there is still time to avoid dangerous climate change, but the window of opportunity is closing rapidly. The world’s biggest emitters – China and the US – are showing real global leadership for the first time. US leadership during the ozone crisis was critical to providing the necessary confidence to spark bold action by many nations."

In order to address the critical global challenges facing humanity, we need a global research programme that brings together the intellectual might of the world to tackle the greatest scientific challenge of our time. That programme, says Rockström, is Future Earth. 

Read the full article.