Planetary boundaries, negative emissions, mitigation & fairness

Published On: July 4, 2024

Kevin Anderson and Johan Rockström discuss their views on the risks and challenges we face.

Johan Rockström is best known for his work on the Planetary Boundary Framework and as co-director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. In this wide-ranging conversation with Kevin Anderson, recorded in Norway in March 2023, they discuss their respective views on the risks and challenges we face in delivering on our Paris climate commitments.


  • 00:00 Introductions
  • 01:05 Outlining the planetary boundary & tipping points framework
  • 05:14 How long before we see tipping points occurring?
  • 10:00 Climate impacts this century
  • 17:45 Understanding the conservatism of the IPCC process
  • 24:20 Integrated Assessment Models: do they rely too much on CO2 removal?
  • 28:58 Is the promise of future ‘carbon dioxide removal’ undermining emission reductions?
  • 37:06 How ready to deploy are ‘negative emissions technologies’ really?
  • 40:39 Where is equity in Integrated Assessment Models?
  • 46:36 Privileged scientists in wealthy countries have framed the mitigation agenda
  • 49:15 Is change driven top-down or bottom-up?
  • 52:21 The role for citizens’ assemblies in guiding mitigation policy
  • 56:39 Is academia biased towards the status quo, rather than real action on climate?

👉 The seminal 2009 paper on planetary boundaries that Johan co-authored, ‘Planetary Boundaries: Exploring the Safe Operating Space for Humanity’, is available in full at

👉 The Nature paper by Lucas Chancel that Kevin mentions is ‘Global carbon inequality over 1990–2019’, available in full at

👉 The IEA report that Kevin mentions is ‘The world’s top 1% of emitters produce over 1000 times more CO2 than the bottom 1%’, available to read at

👉 The Swedish citizens’ assembly report mentioned in the interview is available at (only available in Swedish).

👉 For more information about the topics in this interview:

About the Author: Climate State
Climate State
Climate State covers the broad spectrum of climate change, and the solutions, since 2011 with the focus on the sciences. Climate State – we endorse data, facts, empirical evidence.
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments