Agriculture is being hit hard by climate change. This can lead to many millions of people going hungry. Photo: Meriç Tuna / Unsplash


Hunger is increasing as a result of climate change

Despite the fact that global poverty in the world has decreased, the UN warns of an increase in world hunger. The reason is that climate change is affecting agriculture, which can produce less food. And there are no ambitions to deal with it, according to several global reports.

Extreme poverty in the world has decreased over the last 15 years. It shows evaluations of the Millennium Development Goals - an initiative adopted in 2000, with eight goals to improve the living conditions of people in low-income countries and create the conditions for sustainable global development. But the UN's World Food Program warns that hunger will increase in the coming years.

How can world hunger increase when poverty decreases? Prolonged and increasingly complicated conflicts are a strong contributing factor. But there is another important factor, namely the impact of climate change on agriculture.

The annual report, Global Risks Report from the World Economic Forum, identifies that climate change is the major challenge of the coming years. Extreme weather differences and loss of biodiversity come in greater
extent to affect the availability of food for millions of people. The report also points out that there is a lack of ambition and adaptation to the global climate agreement adopted in Paris in 2015.

The World Economic Forum estimates that the world population will increase by a third by 2050. It requires a societal change to deal with climate change, and a change in agricultural production to meet the demand for food.

As sea levels rise, there will be more and more floods that will affect agriculture, according to the Global Risks Report. Previous arable land will become unusable due to lack of water and drought. The storm phenomenon El Nino affects states on the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean and has intensified in connection with climate change. El Nino in 2015-2016 caused price increases for food because access to food decreased in the affected areas. It becomes problematic in densely populated areas such as India, South America and Indonesia. These states are also major producers of sugar, cocoa and wheat consumed globally.

A deterioration in food production also affects the livelihoods of individuals and society. According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), drought causes an estimated 80 percent of the total loss in agriculture. In places where agriculture is of great importance for the state's economic growth or the individual's self-sufficiency opportunities, this can mean that there will be famines. States without well-functioning institutions are also judged to have less capacity to meet current and future challenges.

In the 17 global goals adopted in 2015 - and which followed the Millennium Development Goals - goal number 2 is "no hunger". One of the sub-goals is to improve and double food production by 2030. Everyone should have access to nutritious food - and enough food. The global goals also address the need for new sustainable systems and methods that are adapted to climate change. It requires that one must prevent and relate to the Paris Agreement.

Researchers and international bodies warn of how agriculture will be affected by climate change. Access to food in many places is at risk, and few measures are being taken to prevent it. Although the world has succeeded in reducing extreme poverty, many millions of people may be forced to go hungry.

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