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  • A loss and damage (L&D) fund has been established to support particularly vulnerable developing countries. L&D funding needs, entitlements and necessary contributions can be quantified using climate economics coupled with historical responsibility principles; for the year 2025, total L&D funding needs are estimated to be US $395 [128–937] billion.

    • Massimo Tavoni
    • Pietro Andreoni
    • Leonie Wenz
  • Growing awareness of environmental risks and mounting regulatory and consumer pressure have driven unprecedented demand for environmental science expertise in the corporate sector. Recruiting skilled individuals with academic backgrounds and fostering collaboration among businesses, research institutions, universities and environmental professionals are vital for enhancing environmental knowledge and capability in companies.

    • Alexey K. Pavlov
    • Daiane G. Faller
    • Jane E. Collins
  • Antarctica and the Southern Ocean provide numerous ecosystem services that benefit people globally, but many are ‘invisible’ to markets and to some decision makers. A subset of these services — Antarctic tourism, commercial fisheries, and a suite of inter-related regulating services — are conservatively valued at ~US $180 billion annually, highlighting their importance.

    • Natalie Stoeckl
    • Vanessa Adams
    • Satoshi Yamazaki
  • Sonification uses non-speech audio to convey complex data patterns in both space and time, overcoming visual and language barriers to science communication. Data sonification is primed to aid interpretations of multi-dimensional Earth and environmental data streams, perhaps even revealing unrecognized patterns and feedbacks in unwieldy datasets.

    • M. Russo
    • T. M. Gernon
    • T. K. Hincks
  • Disaster risk communication traditionally focuses on authorities conveying hazard and risk information to at-risk populations, with little consideration of local community knowledge. To enable risk reduction and resilience, disaster management must forge partnerships with local communities and empower citizen-led initiatives.

    • I. S. Stewart
    • E. Sevilla
    • E. Yahya Menteşe
  • Infrastructure development and biodiversity conservation are often planned and executed in isolation. However, outcomes from these efforts are interlinked, with coordinated actions required to jointly address sustainability challenges. Natural infrastructure — encompassing a spectrum of natural to conventional solutions — is key to the infrastructure–biodiversity connection and should be brought into large-scale application.

    • S. Kyle McKay
    • Seth J. Wenger
    • Todd S. Bridges
  • Biogeochemistry is controlled by a small set of microbial-encoded proteins containing redox-sensitive transition metals as their core catalytic centre. Understanding how the environmental distribution and availability of these metals influences microbial functional diversity will unlock fundamental knowledge into Earth and life coevolution.

    • Donato Giovannelli
  • The rapid emergence of deep learning is attracting growing private interest in the traditionally public enterprise of numerical weather and climate prediction. A public–private partnership would be a pioneering step to bridge between physics- and data-based methods, and necessary to effectively address future societal challenges.

    • Peter Bauer
    • Peter Dueben
    • Bjorn Stevens
  • Digital twins — virtual replicas of natural systems — are emerging as promising tools for assessing seismic hazard and for aiding disaster decision-making and earthquake rapid response. However, to truly harness their potential, the challenges of exascale computing must be tackled to create systems that are capable of adapting to ever-evolving earthquake dynamics.

    • Luca Dal Zilio
    • Domenico Giardini
    • Stefan Wiemer
  • Modelling of irrigation water withdrawals aims for accurate and relatively objective estimates, but three epistemological obstacles (models’ elusive tie to reality, model plurality and indeterminacy of the target system) make this premise unattainable. However, if used to explore possibilities within the known and unknown, irrigation models can overcome these problems to inform action.

    • Arnald Puy
    • Michela Massimi
    • Andrea Saltelli
  • Soil records information about past environmental and ecological conditions, yet little is known about mechanisms of memory, transmission of information across space and time, and potential consequences for ecosystem functioning. More systematic inclusion of soil memory in Earth system models can account for complex land surface responses to disturbances and changing climate.

    • Mehdi Rahmati
    • Dani Or
    • Harry Vereecken
  • Estimates of plastic input from rivers to ocean vary by up to five orders of magnitude. Harmonization of field data used to calibrate models and a better understanding of transport processes are key to reducing these uncertainties, contributing to meaningful assessments of the effectiveness of environmental regulations against plastic pollution.

    • Daniel González-Fernández
    • Caspar T. J. Roebroek
    • Tim H. M. van Emmerik
  • Emerging technologies can enhance the measurement and analysis of soil data and unleash its potential to support different ecosystem functions. However, concerns about ownership and reward complicate how and when the resulting data is shared. Soil data sharing must be incentivized to promote soil science.

    • Tegbaru B. Gobezie
    • Asim Biswas
  • The 2023 Kahramanmaraş earthquakes occurred on active faults that were known to be a high seismic hazard, yet the devastating impacts of these earthquakes show that the risk was not adequately considered. Vulnerabilities arising from exposure, corruption and poverty led to a lack of seismic preparedness which amplified the earthquake risk into a tragic disaster.

    • Ekbal Hussain
    • Sibel Kalaycıoğlu
    • Ziyadin Çakir
  • Feedbacks between chemical, physical, and biological processes at rift zones evolve through various time (seconds to 107 yrs) and spatial (microns to 106 m) scales. Consideration of these scales is needed to tap rift energy, water, and mineral resources safely and equitably while preserving biodiversity in these changing settings.

    • Cynthia Ebinger
    • Jolante van Wijk
    • Karen Fontijn
  • Drilling into the uppermost mantle through a complete section of intact ocean crust, formed at a fast-spreading mid-ocean ridge, would liberate fundamental knowledge into Earth processes. The activities and achievement will also inspire future generations of geoscientists, who are essential to adapt to climate change and deliver the energy transition.

    • Damon A. H. Teagle
  • Flexible decision-making tools are needed to support action plans for plastics and other pollutants. Reproducible Analytical Pipelines (RAPs) and technological readiness levels (TRLs) will enable systematic validation and global harmonization of plastic pollution monitoring methods.

    • Stefano Aliani
    • Amy Lusher
    • Bert van Bavel
  • Global CO2 emissions for 2022 increased by 1.5% relative to 2021 (+7.9% and +2.0% relative to 2020 and 2019, respectively), reaching 36.1 GtCO2. These 2022 emissions consumed 13%–36% of the remaining carbon budget to limit warming to 1.5 °C, suggesting permissible emissions could be depleted within 2–7 years (67% likelihood).

    • Zhu Liu
    • Zhu Deng
    • Philippe Ciais
  • The textile industry has tried to combat the criticism of fast fashion through overly simplistic solutions at the product and operational level. Fast fashion cannot be fixed — the industry needs to be reconstructed to emphasize long material and product lifetimes.

    • Olli Sahimaa
    • Elizabeth M. Miller
    • Michael Hummel
  • Microorganisms and minerals both contribute to organic carbon preservation and accumulation in soil. The soil microbial carbon pump describes the microbial processes, but a separate soil mineral carbon pump needs to be acknowledged and investigated.

    • Ke-Qing Xiao
    • Yao Zhao
    • Caroline L. Peacock