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Tipping Elements Discussion Series - Amazon

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This is the third in a series of discussions on tipping elements, irreversibility, and abrupt change in the Earth system.

About this event

This discussion series aims to advance the knowledge about tipping elements, irreversibility, and abrupt changes in the Earth system. It supports efforts to increase consistency in treatment of tipping elements in the scientific community, develop a research agenda, and design joint experiments and ideas for a Tipping Element Model Intercomparison Project (TipMip).

This discussion series is a joint activity of the Analysis, Integration, and Modeling of the Earth System (AIMES) global research project of Future Earth, the Earth Commission Working Group 1 Earth and Human Systems Intercomparison Modelling Project (EHSMIP) under the Global Commons Alliance and the Safe Landing Climates Light House Activity of World Climate Research Program (WCRP).

This event will focus on the Amazon:

  • Introduction and moderation – Tim Lenton and Patricia Pinho (5min)
  • Is the Amazon Rainforest near a Tipping Point? – Carlos Nobre (20min)
  • Amazon Forest dieback in CMIP6 Earth System Models – Peter Cox (20min)
  • Questions and discussion (20min)

The final 25min have been reserved for informal discussions on the research agenda and the development of a Tipping Element Model Intercomparison Project (TipMip).

The event will be recorded.

Speaker Information

Professor Carlos. A. Nobre, University of Sao Paulo

Carlos A. Nobre is an Earth System scientist from Brazil. He graduated in Electronics Engineering from the Aeronautics Institute of Technology (ITA), Brazil, in 1974 and obtained a PhD in Meteorology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), USA, in 1983. He dedicated his scientific carrier mostly to Amazonian and climate science at Brazil’s National Institutes of Amazonian Research (INPA) and Space Research (INPE). He proposed almost 30 years ago the hypothesis of Amazon ‘savannization’ in response to deforestation. He was Program Scientist of the Large-Scale Biosphere-Atmosphere Experiment in Amazonia (LBA). He is a former National Secretary of R&D of Ministry of Science and Technology of Brazil and former President of the Federal Agency for Post-Graduate Education (CAPES). He is foreign member of the US National Academy of Sciences, member of the Brazilian Academy of Science and of the World Academy of Science. He was one of the authors of IPCC AR4 awarded with the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007. He is presently a senior researcher with the Institute for Advanced Studies, University of São Paulo.

Peter Cox, University of Exeter

Professor of Climate System Dynamics in Mathematics at the University of Exeter (since 2006), having previously worked at the Met Office-Hadley Centre (1990-2004) and the UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (2004-2006). A lead-author on the last three Assessment Reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC AR4, AR5, AR6), and a highly-cited author in Geosciences.

Organizing Institutions

Analysis, Integration, and Modeling of the Earth System AIMES

The Analysis, Integration, and Modeling of the Earth System (AIMES) project is an international network of Earth system scientists and scholars that seek to develop innovative, interdisciplinary ways to understand the complexity of the natural world and its interactions with human activities.

Through international science coordination and partnerships, AIMES addresses questions beyond the remit of a single institution or discipline to understand the complex interactions between biogeochemistry, Earth system dynamics, and socio-economic conditions under global environmental change. This strategy requires a new level of coordination between disciplinary or process-focused modeling and observations in order to make progress in understanding, predicting, and managing the Earth as an integrated system. AIMES is a global research project of Future Earth.

Earth Commission

The Earth Commission is a global team of scientists with the mission to define a safe and just corridor for people and planet. Working Group 1 Earth and Human Systems Intercomparison Modelling Project (EHSMIP) of the Earth Commission will identify, assess and model key interactions that regulate the state of the planetary (i.e., the physical climate system, the cryosphere, oceans, terrestrial biosphere systems, cycles of water, nutrients and carbon), and human systems. This will inform setting targets for a stable and safe planet, and will help us in developing and understanding pathways that are compatible with these targets.

The scientific guardrails defined by the Earth Commission will guide the Science Based Targets Network in developing tangible science-based targets tailored to cities and companies. The Earth Commission is hosted by Future Earth, the world’s largest network of sustainability scientists, and is the scientific cornerstone of the Global Commons Alliance.

World Climate Research Program WCRP Safe Landing Climates

The World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) Safe Landing Climates Lighthouse Activity is an exploration of the routes to “safe landing” spaces for human and natural systems. It will explore future pathways that avoid dangerous climate change while at the same time contributing to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including those of climate action, zero hunger, clean water and sanitation, good health and well-being, affordable and clean energy, and healthy ecosystems above and below water. The relevant time scale is multi-decadal to millennial. This event is part of a WCRP Lighthouse Activity.

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