As per a LinkedIn discussion here:
My draft proposition is as follows, for steelmanning by Rich Kolm (Project Manager and Scrum Master, Maryland USA):
"The case for human activities causing significant imbalances in carbon cycles, large and meaningful changes in atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, with consequent climate changes and other net negative impacts on the biosphere, biodiversity and the risks threatening ongoing thriving of humanity at scale in balance with the rest of nature in perpetuity, is well established from many lines of credible scientific evidence. My paradigm is to use my own open-minded approach to evaluating all potential sources of evidence, and my own knowledge and experience of relevant fields of study and practice, but also to recognise the limits of my own knowledge and skill, and to seek to rely on evidence from experts in relevant fields, where that evidence can be reasonably held to be credible and persuasive."
"Based on multiple lines of evidence, including (but not restricted to) scientific evidence summarised and referenced in IPCC reports and other UN reports, human activities are the main causes of unsustainability, including damaging climate change since the industrial revolution. Significant imbalances in carbon cycles (resulting in impactful changes in atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases), driven by human activities, are the main cause of AGW. Climate change is one of several aspects of human systems exceeding planetary biophysical sustainability boundaries (eg as per the Planetary Boundaries framework of The Stockholm Resilience Centre). Global human population is projected to peak at about 10 billion (UN estimates). Despite this, on current trajectories, damages from breaching AGW and other boundaries are likely to get much worse before they get better. This will significantly affect the ability of human populations to thrive at scale. Abundance of energy sources and non-biological materials is not an issue, but utilising them without exceeding planetary biophysical boundaries is one. There is a real possibility that the damages from exceeding planetary boundaries (including AGW) will get so bad that civilisational collapse could occur within the next couple of hundred years, and that process could be accelerated if climate tipping points are crossed. To give the best chance of humanity thriving at scale in balance with the rest of nature in perpetuity, the risks associated with exceeding planetary boundaries need to be addressed, including AGW and biodiversity loss. Ultimately, we need to ensure human systems operate within planetary biophysical boundaries. My paradigm is to use my own open-minded approach to evaluating all potential sources of evidence, and my own knowledge and experience of relevant fields of study and practice, but also to recognise the limits of my own knowledge and skill, and to seek to rely on evidence from experts in relevant fields, where that evidence can be reasonably held to be credible and persuasive."
Substantiating sources include:
Steffen W. (2015) "Planetary boundaries: Guiding human development on a changing planet"
Raworth K. (2017) "Doughnut Economics"
Rockstrom J. - Stockholm Resilience Centre - Planetary Boundaries
IPCC reports (latest is AR6, 2022)
UN Population Prospects (2022)
Ord T. (2020) "The Precipice"
The Planetary CFO - working towards a sustainable World Balance Sheet.