"The human population of planet Earth is, in effect, maxed out on its credit cards and soon will have problems paying the mortgage. Unless concerted global efforts are made to address these mounting problems, GEO-4 concludes that we shall shortly pass the point of no return."
The authors—388 scientists reviewed by roughly 1,000 of their peers—view the report as "an urgent call for action" and decry the "woefully inadequate" global response to problems such as climate change. "The amount of resources needed to sustain [humanity] exceeds what is available," the report declares.
"The systematic destruction of the earth's natural and nature-based resources has reached a point where the economic viability of economies is being challenged," Achim Steiner, UNEP's executive director, said in a statement. "The bill we hand our children may prove impossible to pay."