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A new report on climate change's impact on agriculture predicts 25
million more malnourished children around the world by 2050. Countries
in sub-Saharan Africa are particularly vulnerable.
report from the International Food Policy Research Institute says
climate change will increase the global number of malnourished children
by 25 million in the next 40 years.
Forty percent of these children will live in Africa.
report compares economic and biological factors affecting child
nutrition in two future scenarios - a world with and a world without
Gerard Nelson is lead researcher for the report
at the International Food Policy Research Institute. He says climate
change will have a particularly bad impact on agricultural yields in
"On top of that sub-saharan Africa in
particular is home to a large number of poor people," Nelson said. "And
one of the key messages to take home from our analysis is that with
higher incomes people are more resilient to a variety of changes and
that will be especially true for climate change."
says that in 2050 average wheat yields in sub-Saharan Africa will
decline by up to 22 percent as a result of climate change. Irrigation
water supply is also expected to decrease and less food availability
will mean on average 500 calories less per person.
Without climate change, the report projects a rise in calorie availability in Sub-Saharan Africa in 2050.
says African governments need to prioritize investment in the
agriculture sector, particularly in rural roads, research and new
technologies. Three months ahead of climate change talks in Copenhagen,
Nelson says Africa governments should focus on helping their farmers
adapt to climate change.
"As the governments of sub-Saharan
Africa prepare to go to the Copenhagen negotiations they should ensure
that agriculture is included both in the adaptation funding mechanisms
that will come out of Copenhagen as well as allow for the possibility
that mitigation funds can be used in Africa," Nelson said.
report says an additional investment in global agriculture of $7
billion per year could increase production and counteract the adverse
effects of climate change.
The report says 40 percent of this investment should go to sub-Saharan Africa.