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Global environmental change and sustainability science increasingly recognize the need to address the consequences of changes taking place in the structure and function of the biosphere. These changes raise questions such as: Who and what are vulnerable to the multiple environmental changes underway, and where? Research demonstrates that vulnerability is(More)
One of the most perplexing problems in risk analysis is why some relatively minor risks or risk events, as assessed by technical experts, often elicit strong public concerns and result in substantial impacts upon society and economy. This article sets forth a conceptual framework that seeks to link systematically the technical assessment of risk with(More)
The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) is an international process designed to meet the needs of decision-makers and the public for scientific information concerning the consequences of ecosystem change for human well-being, and to analyze options available to enhance the conservation of ecosystems and their contributions to meeting human needs. Leading(More)
There is an unknown but probably small probability that the West-Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) will collapse because of anthropogenic climate change. A WAIS collapse could cause a 5–6 metre global sea level rise within centuries. In three case studies, we investigate the response of society to the most extreme yet not implausible scenario, a five-metre sea(More)
Our aim is to make an appropriate characterization and interpretation of the risk problem of rapid large sea level rise that reflects the very large uncertainty in present day knowledge concerning this possibility, and that will be useful in informing discussion about risk management approaches. We consider mainly the potential collapse of the West(More)