WORLD FOCUS

Planet on the edge: 'Tipping points' of rapid and irreversible climate change

From vast forest fires to coral reefs bleached ghostly white to melting ice sheets, the Earth's vital signs are in trouble. Scientists say the planet is on the cusp of crossing 'tipping points' of rapid and irreversible change. Climate Change Editor David Fogarty spoke to scientists to find out how close human beings are to crossing into a new and more dangerous world.

Last November, a small group of leading climate scientists issued a warning about planetary tipping points and the need to rapidly cut greenhouse gas emissions to limit the risks to humanity.

"Evidence is mounting that these events could be more likely than was thought, have high impacts and are interconnected across different biophysical systems, potentially committing the world to long-term irreversible changes," they wrote in the journal Nature.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 10, 2020, with the headline 'Planet on the edge'. Subscribe