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Tipping Points

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

Source: TH

 Context: A study suggests that climate change could push up to 30% of species over tipping points as their geographic ranges experience unforeseen temperatures.


About Tipping Points:

Definition ‘Tipping points’ are thresholds where the earth’s systems can no longer stabilize. Crossing these points becomes more dangerous with increased warming.
Explanation For example, the melting of Greenland’s ice can reach a tipping point where the ice loss accelerates, leading to a significant rise in sea levels.
Examples of tipping point Melting of Greenland ice; Collapse of Antarctic glaciers (resulting in sea level rise); Destruction of Amazon forests; Melting of all permafrost, etc.
Recent Findings Five dangerous tipping points may have already been passed due to 1.1°C of global heating caused by human activity.
Impacts on Animals When their geographic ranges experience unfamiliarly hot temperatures, up to 30% of species could be at risk. This can lead to habitat loss and potential extinction. Animals may need to adapt or migrate to cooler regions, but the short timeframe makes it challenging.
Actions Needed Urgent action to reduce carbon emissions is crucial to mitigate harm and prevent an extinction crisis. Conservation efforts should be guided by early warning systems to protect vulnerable species.