A safe operating space for humanity

Rockstrom, Johan, Steffen, Will, Noone, Kevin, Persson, Asa, Chapin, F. Stuart III, Lambin, Eric F., Lenton, Timothy M., Scheffer, Marten, Folke, Carl, Schellnhuber, Hans Joachim, Nykvist, Björn, de Wit, Cynthia A., Hughes, Terry, van der Leeuw, Sander, Rodhe, Henning, Sörlin, Sverker, Snyder, Peter K., Costanza, Robert, Svedin, Uno, Falkenmark, Malin, Karlberg, Louise, Corell, Robert W., Fabry, Victoria J., Hansen, James, Walker, Brian, Liverman, Diana, Richardson, Katherine, Crutzen, Paul, and Foley, Jonathan A. (2009) A safe operating space for humanity. Nature, 461 (7263). pp. 472-475.

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Abstract

Although Earth has undergone many periods of significant environmental change, the planet’s environment has been unusually stable for the past 10,000 years1–3. This period of stability — known to geologists as the Holocene — has seen human civilizations arise, develop and thrive. Such stability may now be under threat. Since the Industrial Revolution, a new era has arisen, the Anthropocene, in which human actions have become the main driver of global environmental change. This could see human activities push the Earth system outside the stable environmental state of the Holocene, with consequences that are detrimental or even catastrophic for large parts of the world.

Item ID: 11002
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
ISSN: 1476-4687
Date Deposited: 20 May 2010 03:07
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0501 Ecological Applications > 050102 Ecosystem Function @ 50%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1606 Political Science > 160605 Environmental Politics @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9607 Environmental Policy, Legislation and Standards > 960704 Land Stewardship @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9607 Environmental Policy, Legislation and Standards > 960702 Consumption Patterns, Population Issues and the Environment @ 50%
Citation Count from Web of Science Web of Science 762
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