Earth Entering Uncharted Waters – Humans Overtake Nature as Dominant Force
The Earth has entered a new era, the so-called Anthropocene, whereby humans are a significant and sometimes dominating environmental force. Human activities now significantly impact the planet and how it functions – including atmospheric composition, land cover, marine ecosystems, coastal zones, freshwater systems and global biological diversity. The Earth is a well-connected system, and these simultaneous changes are reinforcing each other. And the magnitude and speed of change in many of the Earth's systems is without precedent. So write four prominent environmentalists in commentary linked here.
The writers believe humanity may cross some critical thresholds unawares, setting off changes which cannot be reversed. They argue for a precautionary approach, partly because natural systems can flip very rapidly from one stable state to another.