The planetary boundaries framework proposes quantitative global limits to the anthropogenic perturbation of crucial Earth system processes, and thus marks out a planetary safe operating space for human activities. Yet, decisions regarding resource use and emissions are mostly made at less aggregated scales, by national and sub-national governments, businesses, and other local actors.

To operationalize the planetary boundaries concept, the boundaries need to be translated into and aligned with targets that are relevant at these decision-making scales.  The authors discuss their findings in the context of previous studies and their implications for future analyses and policy-making. In this way, the planetary boundaries framework is linked to widely-applied operational and policy concepts for more robust strong sustainability decision-making.

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