Towards a green water planetary boundary
Green water - soil moisture, evaporation, and precipitation over land - is fundamental to safeguard Earth system functioning. Nonlinear green-water driven changes in climate, ecosystems, biogeochemistry, and hydrology are becoming increasingly evident and widespread.
Yet, considerations of continental to planetary scale green-water dynamics are yet to be assessed and incorporated in management and governance. Here, we propose a green water planetary boundary (PB) - as part of the planetary boundary framework that demarcates a global safe-operating space for humanity - for assessing green-water related changes that can affect the capacity of the Earth system to remain in Holocene-like conditions.
We consider green-water related processes associated with all scales: spatially distributed units, regions or biomes, and the Earth system as a whole. The proposed green water PB variable is selected through expert elicitation based on a set of transparent evaluation criteria that consider both scientific and governability aspects.
Finally, we clarify the appropriate use of a green water PB, outline remaining challenges, and propose a research agenda for future navigation and quantitative assessments of the biophysical Earth system scale boundaries of green water changes.&lt;/p&gt;
Research news | 2021-07-03
Groundbreaking book on methods to study social-ecological systems
Open-access book covers 28 broad groups of methods, featuring contributions from almost a hundred authors in 16 countries
Research news | 2021-06-23
Better scenario building can help curb global threat of invasive species
Invasive species remain largely ignored in current future analyses. Experts present first set ever of alternative futures for global biological invasions
Research news | 2021-06-22
New software helps design sustainable cities
Natural Capital Project have developed a software that shows city planners where to invest in nature to improve people’s lives. It will also save billions of dollars
Research news | 2021-06-21
Proximity to green boosts building projects
Proximity to ecosystem services raises the value of residential and commercial areas around cities. Future projects should focus more to keep it that way
Research news | 2021-06-18
How much is the right amount of meat?
Celebrating World Sustainable Gastronomy Day, centre doctoral student Kajsa Resare Sahlin on why we need to better understand how much ‘less’ meat actually is and what ‘better’ means
Research news | 2021-06-18
The accidental chef
How a former PhD student’s book on food and life in the Pamir Mountains won the world’s most prestigious culinary book award