Lead researcher Professor Will Steffen from The Australian National University (ANU) joins Graeme Hill bringing stark warnings about tipping points and climate change.
Like many complex systems, the earth itself has tipping points and once you cross those, internal feedbacks loops could drive much dramatic warming and other climate effects.
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An international study has found the Earth is at risk of entering a hothouse climate that could lead to global average temperatures of up to five degrees Celsius higher than pre-industrial temperatures and long-term rises in the sea level of between 10 and 60 metres.
Mr Steffen says such increases in temperatures and sea levels would be devastating for human civilisation and most ecosystems that support plant and animal life.
Listen to the full interview with Will Steffen above.
Weekend Variety Wireless with Graeme Hill, 8pm - midnight Saturdays and Sundays, on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the Rova app on Android and iPhone.