The United Nation’s International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a new report outlining an upcoming food shortage. The report states that due to worsening climate conditions, food will become scarce. And as a result, it will also become more expensive.
The climate conditions will make it harder to grow certain crops, and in some cases, force farmers to change what they are growing. This could result in an overall less nutritious diet for humanity.
More Carbon, Less Nutrition
Greenhouse gases are responsible for the worsening climate conditions, but carbon is by far the worst offender. Carbon levels are rising, and just about everything in our society from cars to cement produce it.
On top of causing the Earth to warm, the higher levels of carbon will affect how nutritious some crops will be. The report found that crops will have 5.9-12.7% less protein, 3.7–6.5% less zinc, and 5.2–7.5% less iron when exposed to higher levels of carbon.
Each Region Will Be Affected Differently
Not all parts of the world will be affected in the same manner or at the same rate. Currently, Europe, Southern Africa, Southern Asia, and Australia are experiencing extreme heatwaves.
These are resulting in lower crop yields.
Meanwhile, parts of the United States are seeing higher yield rates as a result of much wetter seasons.
However, as the planet warms and conditions worsen, no region will escape the overall effects.
Food Supply Is Shrinking, While The Population Grows
While climate conditions will continue to worsen, the global population is expected to grow substantially. The current population is 7.7 billion. By the end of the century, the population is expected to be over 11 billion.
When you consider that people are starving in today’s world when we have a surplus of food, the end of the century will be a very dark time.
The gap between rich and poor nations will become very visible. Rich nations will be able to cope with more expensive food prices, while poorer nations will not.
We Can Still Avoid the Climate Crisis
It is important to remember that the report used the current trends to estimate the effects. There is still time for nations around the world to reduce their emissions.
If nations adhere to the Paris Agreement, humanity has until 2030 to reduce emissions. If not, the damage to our climate will be irreversible.
However, considering how significant the changes need to be, it is very unlikely to occur without more public outcry.