Site for Action

To understand why a new framing on the future of work is necessary, a clarification on what makes it urgent is needed.

Projected and Current Conditions

The development of climate science in the second half of the 20th century made it possible to observe and compute the correlations between greenhouse gas emissions and mean temperature rise.

The first estimations of potential 2°C degrees were proposed by American economist William Nordhaus in 1975.

By means of climate modelling, analysis of the historical climate records and other ways of calculating data, projections about risks of a warmer climate appeared, leading to the agreement on the urgency to limit global warming to 2°C degrees compared to pre-industrial levels.

This consensus has been marked in numerous scientific, socio-economic and technical reports, such as IPCC Assessment Reports, as well as international treaties, like the Kyoto Protocol of 1997 and Paris Agreement of 2015.

Various future scenarios arise from the accumulation of climate data, which becomes more precise with technological advancement.

With low to high level of confidence, these scenarios estimate potential risks for ecosystems and project the changes for human life, such as intensification of extreme weather events; land area and ocean transformations; and species loss; as well as poor water and air quality; food availability; and mass migration.

While one of these scenarios is yet to come, with the intensity of climate effects depending on how rapidly and sustainably the emissions are reduced, current conditions have already significantly transformed the ecosystems.  

The planet temperature has risen, with the 2006-2015 decade being around 0,9°C degrees warmer than preindustrial levels. 

The amount of atmospheric carbon concentration has exceeded 400 parts per million, a milestone which is higher than during at least the past 800,000 years and which is projected to reach 520 ppm between the next 50 to 100 years.

Land area is already undergoing transformation, and its size is expected to grow between 4% to 13%, which is roughly the territory of two Indias or over one Russia, respectively.

In total, around one million species are facing extinction.

A slow cataclysm is unfolding, and any future scenario of work should inherently account for it.

Pre-industrial levels represent the mean climate state before anthropogenic overload occurred, which varies between the late 18th century and mid 20th centuries.

On the left: CO2 emissions for Shared Socioeconomic Pathways baselines graph. On the right: Global mean temperature rise graph.

Illustration of 400 ppm CO2.

Goal State

The terra-collar work addresses these risks as a site for prompt actions.

It follows an established goal state, where global warming stays below 2°C degrees pre-industrial levels.

As things currently stand, we are already heading towards four degrees by mid-century.

To avoid meeting this figure, climate mitigation and adaptation have to become a planetary terraforming project.

However, the work to be done needs to be reframed as well.

Terraforming arises from science fiction and originally defines ecological transformations that sustain Earth-like life outside the planet. The terra-collar work repurposes this notion to describe enormous amounts of work, of a new kind, that needs to be completed to keep the planet habitable.