About ESSP

The ESSP is a partnership for the integrated study of the Earth System, the ways that it is changing, and the implications for global and regional sustainability.

About ESSP

The urgency of the challenge is great: In the present era, global environmental changes are both accelerating and moving the earth system into a state with no analogue in previous history.

About ESSP Partnership

Increasingly, scientists recognize the Earth as a complex and sensitive system regulated by physical, chemical and biological processes—and influenced, as never before, by human factors. The ESSP Education Science System Project brings together researchers from diverse fields, and from across the globe, to undertake an integrated study of the Earth System: its structure and functioning; the changes occurring to the System; and, the implications of those changes for global sustainability.

Read More

The Latest News

  • Countless columns


    "The ESSP is a partnership for the integrated study of the Earth System, the ways that it is changing, and the implications for global and regional sustainability."
  • Responsive Design

    ESSP’s Mission

    "The central activities of the ESSP are Joint Projects on issues of global sustainability, designed to address the global environmental change aspects of four critical issues for human well-being...
  • ~ Font Fiesta ~

    Regional Activities and Capacity Building

    "Current knowledge demonstrates that, at the regional level, aspects of global environmental change manifest significantly different – yet surprisingly coherent and teleconnected – Earth System dynamics.”
  • Layouts & Templates

    Joint Projects

    "The aim of the Joint Projects is to build a global environmental change (GEC)-oriented research agenda of direct relevance for societies, with particular emphasis on four fundamentally important issues."
  • Socials Galore


    "The Earth System Science Partnership is a partnership of four international global environmental change research programmes (DIVERSITAS, IHDP, IGBP, and WCRP) for the integrated study of the Earth System...
  • HTML5 + CSS3

    Integrated Regional Studies

    "The ESSP is currently developing a small set of Integrated Regional Studies (IRS), designed to contribute sound scientific understanding in support of sustainable development at the local level.”
  • Why ESSP?

    Global change is not restricted to climate change and greenhouse gas emissions, nor can it be understood in terms of a simple cause-effect paradigm. Recent studies of the Earth’s land surface, oceans, coasts and atmosphere, of the biological diversity, the water cycle and biogeochemical cycles make it clear that human activity is generating change that extends well beyond natural variability—in some cases, alarmingly so—and at rates that continue to accelerate. Earth System dynamics are characterized by critical thresholds and abrupt changes. Global change research over the last decade shows that the Earth System is currently operating well outside the normal state exhibited over the past 500,000 years.

    Read More

    Joint Projects

    ESSP Joint Projects focus on aspects of global change that are critical to human well-being. At present, these initiatives cover four areas: carbon/energy systems, food, water, and human health. In each instance, the goal is to identify the challenges caused by global change, understand the implications of human-driven change, and build a research agenda of direct relevance for societies. In short, ESSP Joint Projects are designed to span the interface between global change and global sustainability issues, while also gathering new knowledge about how specific processes function within the larger Earth System.

    Read More