Parc National Montagne d'Ambre, Madagascar, credit Madagascar Conservation & Development

We have got to up our game substantially for forests, carbon, biodiversity, and ultimately people

Patrick O. Waeber, Lucienne Wilmé


A recently published contribution in Nature by Lenton et al. (2019) shows that Earth is risking an irreversible planetary tipping point. This means that the Earth’s climate system is in a state of emergency, rushing its way towards a point of no return. The authors have identified nine tipping points—inter alia—melting Arctic and Antarctic ice sheets, retreating permafrost, changing boreal forest fire and pest regimes, and increased frequency of droughts in the Amazon forest. These signals are raising global concerns. While science expected these tipping points to be reached at 3°C increase (e.g., Lemoine and Traeger 2016), recent trends are corroborating the hypothesis that these points of irreversible and abrupt system change already show high probability of being reached within the bounds of 1.5–2°C. During the COP21 of the United Nation Framework Convention for Climate Change (UNFCCC), 195 countries adopted the Paris Agreement to limit global temperature rise to well below 2°C.


forests; climate change; biodiversity; UNFCCC; IPCC; restoration; reforestation; deforestation; déforestation; point de rupture; changement climatique; déforestation; restauration

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