The Nine Planetary Boundaries

Mark Lynas is a journalist  climate activist, and author of The God Species: Saving the Planet in the Age of Humans. Speaking at a Long Now Foundation seminar last month, Lynas speaks of the nine planetary boundaries human society now faces as we struggle to find a path for a sustainable future. These boundaries include biodiversity loss,  biosphere and oceanic inputs of nitrogen and phosphorous , ocean acidification, water consumption, land use, ozone depletion, atmospheric particulate pollution, and chemical pollution. The excerpts below introduce the idea and discuss what Lynas believes is the most critical and urgent boundary: biodiversity loss. The full seminar is available from

Mark Lynas: The Nine Planetary Boundaries from The Long Now Foundation on

Mark Lynas: The Nine Planetary Boundaries from The Long Now Foundation on

Thomas Schueneman
Thomas Schueneman
Tom is the founder and managing editor of and the PlanetWatch Group. His work appears in Triple Pundit, Slate, Cleantechnia, Planetsave, Earth911, and several other sustainability-focused publications. Tom is a member of the Society of Environmental Journalists.

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