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This planet is the home of life, born into existence and transformed over 3.8 billion years into a continuous tapestry, covering all possible places from the deep ocean floors to mountain summits. Ours is a bioclimatic world in which every organism, from bacterium to blue whale, inseparably contributes to the climate and surface conditions of Earth. This tapestry, of which we are a part, is unraveling, with its delicate patterns and motifs denigrated to near invisibility, disappearing at a rate and magnitude that rivals that of the great mass extinction events of the past (2, 3). This fading to nonexistence is making us unfortunate witnesses to the accumulated consequences of human actions over the past 10,000 years. Happily, though, we are now increasingly empowered by science and can act to abate ongoing trends and protect planetary resources before the essential threads of life’s coherence become completely eroded.

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