“For the first time, we are forced to consider the real risk of destabilizing the entire planet,” says climate impact scholar Johan Rockstrom. In a talk backed by vivid animations of the climate crisis, he shows how nine out of the 15 big biophysical systems that regulate the climate — from the permafrost of Siberia to the great forests of the North to the Amazon rainforest — are at risk of reaching tipping points, which could make Earth uninhabitable for humanity. Hear his plan for putting the planet back on the path of sustainability over the next 10 years — and protecting the future of our children.



今後 10 年間で地球を持続可能性の道に戻し、子供たちの未来を守るための彼の計画を聞いてください。

10 years to transform the future of humanity – or destabilize the planet
スピーカー ヨハン・ロックストロム
アップロード 2020/10/15

「人類の未来を変える10年、さもなければ地球を不安定にする(10 years to transform the future of humanity – or destabilize the planet)」の文字起こし

Ten years is a significant span of time for us humans on Earth. It marks ten turns around the sun. A decade ago, when I stood on the TED stage, I discussed planetary boundaries crucial for maintaining a state conducive to human prosperity. These boundaries, once breached, lead to multiplying risks. Climate and biodiversity are core boundaries that impact all others.

At that time, while warning signs were evident, we believed we had more time. However, since then, evidence has mounted, indicating that we are rapidly departing from the safe operating space for humanity. Climate has escalated to a global crisis, with record-breaking extremes occurring over the past decade: fires raging in Australia, Siberia, California, and the Amazon, floods devastating regions in China, Bangladesh, and India, and heatwaves sweeping across the entire northern hemisphere.

We stand on the brink of crossing tipping points that could shift the planet from being resilient to our impacts to working against us, amplifying the heat. The real risk of destabilizing the entire planet looms before us. Our children recognize this urgency, taking to the streets to demand action and lamenting our failure to avert potentially catastrophic risks.

The next decade, leading up to 2030, must witness the most profound transformation the world has ever seen. This is our mission. This is the countdown.

Around a decade ago, my scientific colleagues reported on climate tipping points, identifying one area in serious decline: Arctic sea ice. Other tipping points seemed distant, perhaps 50 or 100 years away. Yet, last year brought a sobering revelation: we are merely decades from witnessing an Arctic devoid of summer sea ice.

In Siberia, permafrost is thawing at alarming rates. Greenland is losing trillions of tons of ice, potentially nearing a tipping point. Northern forests are ablaze, emitting smoke clouds the size of Europe. The Atlantic ocean circulation is decelerating. The Amazon rainforest is weakening and may emit carbon within 15 years. Half of the Great Barrier Reef’s coral has perished. West Antarctica might have already passed a tipping point today, while parts of East Antarctica’s solid glaciers become unstable.

Nine out of fifteen major biophysical systems that regulate climate are in flux, showing concerning signs of decline and nearing tipping points. Tipping points pose three threats: first, sea level rise, with projections of up to one meter this century, endangering the homes of 200 million people. Adding the melting ice from Antarctica and Greenland could lead to a two-meter rise, with potentially worsening consequences. Second, carbon stores like permafrost and forests emitting carbon would complicate efforts to stabilize temperatures. Third, these interconnected systems increase the risk of triggering additional tipping points when one is crossed.

Consider where we stand: the stability of our civilization and biodiversity hinges on a stable climate. Everything is built upon this foundation. Civilization has flourished within a Goldilocks zone—neither too hot nor too cold—for the past 10,000 years since the last ice age. Zooming out further, over three million years, temperatures have never surpassed the two-degree Celsius limit. Earth has self-regulated within a narrow range, from plus two degrees in warm interglacials to minus four degrees in deep ice ages.

Yet, we are now on a trajectory toward a three to four-degree world in just three generations, potentially rewinding the climate clock by five to ten million years. We are drifting perilously toward a hot-house Earth.

For every one-degree rise in temperature, approximately one billion people will be compelled to live in conditions we currently deem uninhabitable. This isn’t just a climate emergency—it’s a planetary emergency. My concern isn’t that Earth will suddenly plummet off a cliff on January 1st, 2030. Rather, it’s that we’ll trigger irreversible changes within the Earth system.

The next decade will likely determine the state of the planet we bequeath to future generations. Our children have every right to be alarmed. It’s imperative that we take decisive action to stabilize our planet.

Two frontiers will guide this transformation. The first lies in science. We must establish a new equation for a sustainable planet: planetary boundaries plus global commons equals planetary stewardship. We need to carve out a safe corridor for humanity, allowing us all to become stewards of the entire planet—not to save the planet itself, but to ensure a prosperous future for all people.

The second frontier lies in society. We require a new economic paradigm centered on well-being. We now have the ability to set science-based targets for all global commons, applicable to every company and city worldwide.

Our first task is clear: we must halve global emissions by 2030 and achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 or sooner. This necessitates decarbonizing the major systems underpinning our lives: energy, industry, transport, and buildings. The era of fossil fuels must come to an end. We must transition agriculture from an emitter of greenhouse gases to a carbon sink. Additionally, it’s imperative that we safeguard our oceans and lands, the natural ecosystems that absorb half of our emissions.

The encouraging news is that we possess the knowledge, technology, and understanding of the social and economic benefits of these actions. When we succeed, we can breathe in fresh air, embrace healthy lifestyles, and foster resilient economies in livable cities.

We’re all passengers on this journey around the sun. Earth is our only home. Our mission is clear: to safeguard the future of our children. Thank you.

「人類の未来を変える10年、さもなければ地球を不安定にする(10 years to transform the future of humanity – or destabilize the planet)」の和訳