Justin Rowlatt discovers how global warming may trigger irreversible changes to our planet. With contributions by Professor Tim Lenton
First aired 6 June 2022
Making Landscape Decisions to Meet Net Zero Carbon: Pathways that consider ethics, socio-ecological diversity, and landscape functions
A recent report co-authored by colleague, Dr Katherine Earnshaw.
Accelerating the 10 Critical Transitions: Positive Tipping Points for Food and Land Use Systems Transformation
The Food and Land Use Coalition (FOLU) in partnership with GSI released this report in July 2021 showing that small, targeted changes in the ways we produce food and use our land can trigger large, often irreversible, positive responses for people and the planet. Read the report here.
BBC Radio: A Geochemical History of Life on Earth
Justin Rowlatt discovers how phosphorus may have held evolution back for a billion years. How plants first colonised the land - precipitating an ice age in the process. And why volcanoes have both rescued and almost wiped out life on the planet, thanks to the carbon dioxide they emit. Professor Tim Lenton explains why he thinks lowly lichen may have turned the Earth into a snowball. Listen here
Biden Administration climate finance report
The White House released a new report, A Roadmap to Build a Climate-Resilient Economy, ahead of COP26. The report recognises that climate change poses a systemic risk to the US economy and that decisive action must be taken to mitigate its impacts, setting out steps for action. Tipping points research by GSI Director, Professor Tim Lenton was cited in the report. Read full report here
Amazônia exhibition at the Science Museum
The exhibition Amazônia, at the Science Museum in London running from October 2021- March 2022, celebrates the indiginous peoples and varied landscapes of the Brazilian rainforest through the stunning images of the photographer, Sebastião Salgado. GSI Director Professor Tim Lenton was part of the Scientific Advisory board for the exhibition and contributed to an accompanying short film and blog. More information.
GSI Director Tim Lenton has recorded three videos for EXPeditions, a living library of ideas.
- Gaia 2.0, a radical new stage in the history and the future of our planet
- What climate tipping points could mean for life on Earth
- Revolutions that made the Earth
The new website is open to everyone and free to access.
Podcast: Met Office: Mostly Climate
In this episode we look at climate tipping points - the mechanisms by which parts of the climate system may undergo irreversible change.
Joining presenter Dr. Doug McNeall is Professor Tim Lenton, Director of the Global Systems Institute and Chair in Climate Change and Earth System Science at the University of Exeter.
Contributing speakers are:
Dr. Richard Wood, Climate, Cryosphere and Oceans Group Lead, Met Office Hadley Centre.
Dr. Ed Blockley, Polar Climate Group Lead, Met Office
Dr. Liana Anderson, Rsearcher at the National Center for Monitoring and Early Warning of Natural Disasters (CEMADEN) in Brazil
Dr. Johannes Lohmann, Postdoctoral Researcher at the University of Copenhagen
Producers Clare Nasir and Grahame Madge
Series Editor: Adrian Holloway
Podcast: The Owl Hoot
Dr James Dyke is Assistant Director of the Global Systems Institute at the University of Exeter.
Der Tagesspiegel (German)
Eisschilde, Regenwälder und Meeresströmungen können sich im Klimawandel grundlegend verändern – und andere Kippelemente mitreißen.
Author: Patrick Eickemeier
GSI Contribution: Director Tim Lenton
Analysis shows significant risk of cascading events even at 2C of heating, with severe long-term effects
Author: Damian Carrington Environment editor
GSI Contribution: Director Tim Lenton
A stability analysis of the ice sheet covering a large area of Greenland suggests that the ice melting may be approaching a point of no return.
“The results are sobering, but the way they have managed to [obtain them] is impressive,” says University of Exeter, UK, climate scientist Tim Lenton. While the ice sheet is a sluggish system that changes on very slow timescales, the fact that the researchers could extract signatures of the slowed-down fluctuations from observational data is “a real pleasant surprise.” Lenton says that results like those obtained by Boers and Rypdal support earlier calls for developing tools for anticipating climate change impacts (see, for instance, the 2013 National Academy of Sciences report). “With a relatively modest investment we could develop an early warning signal for a range of climate tipping points,” Lenton says.
Source: Physics 14, 80
Author: Richard Blaustein is a freelance science and environmental journalist based in Washington, DC
Big Biology Podcast
Survival of the Systems: The power of persistence
Big Biology is a podcast that tells the stories of scientists tackling some of the biggest unanswered questions in biology.
On this episode of Big Biology, we talk to Tim Lenton, Director of the Global Systems Institute. In his 2021 Trends in Ecology & Evolution paper “Survival of the Systems,” Tim outlined his idea that large, complex systems--such as grasslands, coral reefs, and even human economies--are subject to a kind of natural selection based on their ability to persist. Tim argues that systems better able to extract and recycle resources will spread across landscapes and outcompete other such systems.
CBS News: Climate tipping points may have been reached already, experts say
GSI Director Tim Lenton provided information to Jeff Berardelli (Meterologist and Climate Specialist) of CBS News for an article and video on 'Climate tipping points may have been reached already'
Grist: Points of no return
Really intersting artilce on climate tipping points avalible on the Grist website.
Nobel Prize Summit 2021 Webinar: Tipping Points for Sustainability Transitions
Ecosystems are being destabilized by climate change and are at risk of reaching irreversible tipping points. Which way will things tip? How to manage tipping points as opportunities? Tipping points experts discuss these and other urgent questions in this Webinar (30 March 2021). With Hans Joachim Schellnhuber (PIK), Tim Lenton (Uni. Exeter), Cameron Hepburn (Uni. Oxford), Ilona M. Otto (Uni. Graz), Jonathan Donges (PIK), Manjana Milkoreit (Uni Oslo), Peter Bakker (WBCSD). Moderator: Oliver Morton (the Economist).
Podcast: The Sustainability Agenda
The Sustainability Agenda is a weekly podcast exploring today’s biggest sustainability questions. Leading sustainability thinkers offer their views on the biggest sustainability challenges, share the latest thinking, identify what’s working --and what needs to change -- and think about the future of sustainability.
In this interview, Professor Tim Lenton discusses his work with Bruno Latour, exploring how humans could add some level of self-awareness to Earth's self-regulation.
Author: Fergal Byrne
Thomson Reuters Foundation: News Article
This interesting news article produced with GSI Director Tim Lenton explores the concept of ‘positive’ climate tipping points through the lens of electric vehicles, changing diets and the end of coal power.
Author: Laurie Goering
Positive ‘tipping points’ offer hope for climate
Professor Tim Lenton (GSI Director) and simon Sharpe's (Deputy Director in the UK Cabinet Office COP26 unit) recent article ‘Upward-scaling tipping cascades to meet climate goals: plausible grounds for hope’ published on the in the Journal Climate Policy was the focus of much media attention. The following is a list of media articles reflecting interest in this publication, and the topic of Positive ‘tipping points’
Mongabay Series: Planetary Boundaries
Click the link below to check out the Q&A session on critical climate tipping points with GSI director Tim Lenton
6th January 2021
EXP-Editions - Professor Tim Lenton
In partnership with EXP-Editions Tim Lenton has created three short conversation on the subject of climate change and earth system science. EXP-Editions aims to provide accessible and reliable knowledge from the best thinkers, researchers and academics of our time. Click on the links below to explore Tim’s contribution.
Interview: BBC World Service - News Day
Decarbonisation of the steel industry
Pim Vercoulen GSI affiliated PhD student, and Consultant for Cambridge Econometrics was interviewed on the BBC World Service - News Day programme talking about the decarbonisation of the steel industry.
For more information on the subject please check out this blog post:
Politecnico di Milano 1863: Seminar CS³@DICA
‘Tipping positive change to avoid climate tipping points’
Click the link below to watch Professor Tim Lenton, Director of the Global Systems Institute Presentation for the CS³@DICA Seminar ‘Climate-Related Risks and Extrema Events’
Date: November 19th 2020
The Science and Politics of Landing on Earth
Edited by Bruno Latour and Peter Weibel
Artists and writers portray the disorientation of a world facing climate change.
Contributions include two co-authored essays from GSI Director Professor Tim Lenton, and Sebastien Dutreuil
‘What exactly is the Role of Gaia’ and 'Distinguishing Gia from the Earth System[s]'
Critical Zone has been listed in The New York times ‘Best Art Books of 2020’
GARP’s Climate Risk Podcast
The systemic and existential nature of the risks arising from climate change requires us to engage with the problem strategically at a high level. But how can we do this when the problem is so vast and complex?
During this episode, you will hear from Tim Lenton, a leading academic in the field of earth system science and co-author of the seminal and award-winning paper on climatic tipping points and the non-linearity of climate change.