In The Near Future

The remainder of this chapter focuses on the extent to which global climate change may contribute to food insecurity in the relatively near term, or 2012. The emission of greenhouse gases has already been associated with a rise in mean global temperature of from 0.3°C to 0.6°C since the late 19th century (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 2001). This has been accompanied by changes in precipitation in some locations as well.

Several major impacts of such climate changes on food security are evident. First, the impacts of climate change on growing-season length are estimated. Length of growing season was an important component of agricultural productivity in selected low-income countries during the 20th century. Percent changes in growing season for the 2002-2012 period are then extrapolated from the 20th century results. Using data from an earlier study, percent changes in growing season are transformed into percent changes in crop yield. Projections of food distribution gaps in 2012 (see Section 4.2.2.2) are then re-estimated with the climate-induced yield changes removed from the FSA's base yield projections. An analysis of these projections is presented below.

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