Date published: Oct 2018
SUERF Policy Note, Issue No 45
By Angela Köppl, Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO), and Sigrid Stagl, WU - Vienna University of Economics and Business and Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO)
Planetary Boundaries identify global priorities relating to human-induced changes to the environment. Natural scientists found that nine processes and systems regulate the stability and resilience of the Earth System that together provide conditions upon which our societies and economies depend. Four of nine planetary boundaries have now been crossed because of human activity. Two of these, climate change and biosphere integrity, are what scientists call "core boundaries". Significantly altering either of these core boundaries would drive the Earth System into a new state (Steffen, Richardson et al., 2015). Staying within the ‘safe operating space’ and thereby avoiding dangerous climate change requires substantial restructuring of economies and a paradigm shift in economics and financial decision-making.
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