Tipping elements are regional-scale features of the climate that could exhibit threshold-type behaviour in response to human-driven climate change – that is, a small amount of climate change at a critical point could trigger an abrupt and/or irreversible shift in the tipping element. The consequences of such shifts for societies and ecosystems are likely to be severe. Question marks indicate systems whose status as tipping elements is particularly uncertain. There are other potential tipping elements that are missing from the map, for example shallow-water coral reefs (Veron et al. 2009) threatened in part by ocean acidification
EEA standard re-use policy: unless otherwise indicated, re-use of content on the EEA website for commercial or non-commercial purposes is permitted free of charge, provided that the source is acknowledged (http://www.eea.europa.eu/legal/copyright). Copyright holder: Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK).
Sign up to receive our reports (print and/or electronic) and quarterly e-newsletter.
Find out about the special flora and fauna in your area.
Threatened and endangered species can be found in all kinds of ecosystems, big and small. Learn what kinds of species are listed as endangered in your area and commit to assisting in the preservation of their habitat.
More green tips