A group of scientists have claimed that the Earth may be headed toward an irreversible crisis as several of the planet’s “tipping points” are reportedly "active" now. The scientists urged for quick response as the changes may become vital for survival on the planet.

In a commentary, published in the journal Nature on Wednesday, the researchers said evidence suggested the irreversible changes in the environment were underway and might cause catastrophic results. The researchers’ group termed it a “state of planetary emergency”.

The reports said the global tipping point was an indication that Earth’s important resources are damaged beyond repairs, such as the fire in the Amazon forest and the quicker melting of ice sheets. The scientists added that such a situation may lead to conditions of “hothouse”, causing the temperature to swiftly rise and ice caps to complete meltdown, making the planet uninhabitable.

The group of scientists led by Timothy Lenton, professor of climate change in the University of Exeter in England, discovered nine active spots of such tipping points. Apart from the destruction of the Amazon forest, accelerated ice melting of the Arctic sea, deaths of a large number of coral reefs, and melting of the Greenland ice sheet, the scientists also warned about the destruction of boreal forests, melting of the permafrost and the slowdown of ocean circulation.

The scientists stated that the events were all tied together and had an impact on one another as well. They also warned it might lead to a series of bad events in terms of weather.

The team said, “Research last year analyzed 30 types of regime shift spanning physical climate change and ecological systems, from collapse of the West Antarctica ice sheet to a switch from rainforest to savanna.”

They added, “This indicated that exceeding tipping points in one system can increase the risk of crossing them in others.”

Markets may be able to fund the green revolution needed to slow climate change as investors adopt socially responsible investment principles Markets may be able to fund the green revolution needed to slow climate change as investors adopt socially responsible investment principles Photo: AFP / INA FASSBENDER