The Earth Commission is a group of leading scientists convened by Future Earth. Their mission will be to synthesize the latest science to underpin the development of science-based targets for systems like land, water, and biodiversity.
The life on Earth that we desire for today and tomorrow fundamentally depend on clean air and water, biodiversity, healthy land and ocean and a stable climate. These are the global commons: the shared resources that ensure a habitable planet upon which we can all thrive.
Urgent Action is Needed
Today, human activities are accelerating changes in the Earth system at a scale and pace that is threatening the global commons – and the foundation for human well-being. Urgent action is needed to slow the change.
To combat climate change, the world’s nations have agreed to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees, but similar science-based targets for other parts of the Earth system are missing.
We Need Targets – Guided by Science
The mission of the Earth Commission is to provide the scientific insights needed to set science-based targets that can help maintain the functioning life support systems of Earth: land, biodiversity, freshwater, oceans.
The Earth Commission is a group of leading scientists and experts who will analyze the latest science to publish reports defining the conditions for a stable planet. Up to 20 Commissioners will be appointed during 2019. Future Earth will host the Earth Commission’s scientific secretariat in collaboration with Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, PIK, and International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, IIASA.
Part of a Larger Network
The Earth Commission will be complementary to and build on existing assessments, such as the IPCC, IPBES and GEO reports. In areas with intergovernmental processes in place, the Commission’s work will inform the setting of science-based targets developed through those processes.
The insights of the Earth Commission will be central for informing the work of a new Science Based Targets network developing methodologies for companies and cities to set specific science-based targets to guide policies and practice.
The work of the Earth Commission complements and is informed by Future Earth’s initiative Science Based Pathways for Sustainability, which is mobilising our extensive network of global research projects and knowledge action networks to generate new research at national, regional and global levels to feed the synthesis of the Earth Commission
Both the Earth Commission and the Science Based Targets network are parts of the Global Commons Alliance, a network of organizations aiming to ensure our planet remains habitable.