THE SCIENCE IS CLEAR:
HUMANS ARE THE MAJOR DRIVING FORCE ON PLANET EARTH

Science shows clearly that we have entered a whole new geological epoch, the Anthropocene, where since the 1950s, human activity has begun to have a notable impact on the stable conditions that have enabled all civilizations to form and prosper over the last 11,000 years. That same science shows that it is up to us to make the changes we need and that doing so will have tremendous benefits for humanity and the natural systems on which we depend. Science and innovation are also already providing the solutions for a sustainable tomorrow, today. The key now is to get them out of the laboratories and pilot phases and into our everyday lives by injecting these transformative ideas into our urban, food, energy and production-consumption systems.

The Global Commons & the Anthropocene

Intelligence

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The Great Decoupling

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Global Commons in the Anthropocene

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The New York Times - Today’s Climate Progress and Tomorrow’s Climate Challenges

Events

 The global commons – the ecosystems, biomes and processes that regulate the stability and resilience of the Earth system – are the foundation of the global economy and modern society, and they have been for the last ten thousand years. Decades of degradation have resulted in our ocean, air and land systems approaching irreversible tipping points, creating extreme unpredictability and undermining the prospect for achieving the 2030 sustainable development goals.
19 January, 2017
World Economic Forum, Davos
16 November, 2016
UNFCCC COP22, Marrakech
Naoko Ishii, CEO of the Global Environment Facility, and Inger Andersen, Director General of IUCN, on stage at the Our Global Commons Dialogue 12 Oct 2016
12 October, 2016
National Academy of Science, Washington DC

The answer to the tragedy of the commons is the answer to how we bring it within this horizon. We are smart enough, and have resources aplenty to solve our problems. We need the will and motivation—personal and political—to do it. For that to happen, we need to make an appeal within the care horizon.

Erik Solheim, Executive Director, UN Environment

The Care Horizon

The agenda that preserves our global commons is also the only sustainable route to growth and poverty reduction. But action with real pace and scale is urgent: the window of opportunity is narrow. The decisions we make over the next 15 years will determine what kind of world we will have for the rest of the century

Nicholas Stern, Chair, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at London School of Economics and Political Science; President, British Academy

Only Green Growth Can Bring Prosperity

We are custodians of our planet, a global commons that, by 2050, will be home to some 9 billion people. It is our duty to live in such a way that the precious, life sustaining environment which keeps us is passed to future generations in at least as healthy a state as we received it from those before us.

Mary Robinson, President, Mary Robinson Foundation—Climate Justice

Climate Change Isn’t Fair

Despite such tremendous forces of transformation as climate change and dramatic socioeconomic inequality, there are credible and accessible political, economic, cultural and technological choices that can promote general welfare in ways that support and even enhance our planet’s natural assets.

Inger Andersen, Director General, IUCN

The Natural Way Forward

Four revolutionary shifts in social and economic life are needed to tame Bigfoot-style economic impacts and safeguard the global commons: transforming cities, re-thinking food and agriculture, decarbonizing energy systems, and transitioning from linear approaches to production, design, use and disposal of materials to circular economic models.

Andrew Steer, President and CEO, World Resources Institute

Taming Bigfoot

Jointly implementing all the SDGs would contribute both to further human development and to safeguarding the commons and the stability of the Earth systems. Importantly, joint implementation that avoids silo-type thinking would be cheaper and faster than tackling them separately

Nebojsa Nakicenovic, Deputy Director General/Deputy Chief Executive Officer, and Caroline Zimm, Research Assistant, Transitions to New Technologies, IIASA

Leave No SDG Behind

What we need—and urgently—is a radical shift in perception by the private sector to view the global goals as the greatest economic opportunity any generation has had, rather than a burden and constraint to growth.

Mark Malloch-Brown, Chair of the Business and Sustainable Development Commission

Transforming Globalisation

Someone will have to do all this, and soon, or these wicked problems will come home to roost, and we will never properly address the competing challenges of managing our global commons and ensuring needed economic development. Then, as ever, it is likely to be the poorest people who will lose out.

Dominic Waughray, Head of Public-Private Partnership, Member of the Executive Committee, WEF

Three Wicked Problems of the Commons

We are at a precarious point for the fate of the global commons. Our actions on climate protection over the next few years will determine whether we continue on a path of exponentially growing national disasters, or pivot onto a path toward a safer, more prosperous world.

Christiana Figueres, Former Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC, Convener, Mission 2020

Why 2020 is a Critical Milestone on Our Journey to a Climate-Safe World

“Business is in a unique position to observe and intervene in many issues facing the global commons — from reducing emissions and addressing climate change, to stopping ocean pollution and fixing broken food systems. Across the world, companies are stepping up to meet the challenge.”

Peter Bakker, President, World Business Council for Sustainable Development

A Wealth of Opportunities

“Operating within the planetary boundaries is not just the only way to ensure healthy economies, but has the potential to provide much greater and better shared growth than sticking to business as usual. Safeguarding and enhancing the global commons is therefore the wisest investment we can possibly make”

Naoko Ishii, CEO and Chairperson, GEF

Safeguarding the Global Commons is the Wisest Investment We Can Make