Not an April fool: climate change and agriculture

Mariann Fischer Boel1 writes:

The evidence of climate change is compelling. It is happening and it will hit the European Union. As it does so, European agriculture will feel the full force.

Most people understand that global warming will damage the environment. Fewer people understand that it could also land a hammer blow on food production … at a time when we expect the global population to grow from around 7 billion to 9 billion by 2050.

Some regions of the EU could benefit from climate change for a time: for example, yields in some northern zones could increase. On the other hand, the droughts that we foresee would hurt southern European countries which are already running short of water for irrigation. In the EU as a whole we can expect more sudden heatwaves, more sudden storms, more sudden floods. The sheer unpredictability of the weather will make the farmer’s life very difficult.

Question: why publish it on April 1, when the world is looking for hidden agendas?

Meanwhile, SciDev.net reports on a new report from those masters of the data-filled report, the International Food Policy Research Institute. According to SciDev.net:

Agriculture will be “dramatically” affected by climate change, says the paper, published by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI). It could also become a potent brake on climate change if the right research and policies are implemented.

But its role has yet to be championed in the build-up to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change negotiations to take place in Copenhagen in December, says the paper ‘Agriculture and Climate Change: An Agenda for Negotiation in Copenhagen’.

Question: who is going to be championing agriculture in Copenhagen?

  1. EU commissioner for agriculture. []

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