World’s food supply at risk due to climate change, window to act rapidly closing: UN

3 min read
  1. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has recently released a report titled Climate Change and Land’.
  2. The report explains how land-based activities such as agriculture, forestry, cattle-rearing and urbanisation is causing global warming, and is affected by the climate change.
  3. According to the report, the land sector had been contributing about 5.2 billion tonnes of Carbon dioxide every year between 2007 and 2016.
  4. It further notes that the global food production system could account for 16 to 27% of GHG emissions — up to 37%, if factors such as transportation and food processing are included.
  5. It points out that nearly 25% of all food produced is either lost or wasted. And even the decomposition of the waste releases emissions.
  6. The report highlights that the global rise in temperature has been much faster over land than over the entire planet. This additional warming over land could have led to increased frequency, intensity and duration of heat-related events such as heat waves.
  7. The report suggests that measures such as a) reduction in food wastage, b) sustainable agriculture practices and c) shifting of dietary preferences to include more plant-based food, could reduce GHG emissions and strengthen food security.
  8. The IPCC is an intergovernmental body of the United Nations. It provides policymakers with regular scientific assessments on climate change, its implications and potential future risks. It also puts forward adaptation and mitigation options.
  9. The land report is the second special report of IPCC. The IPCC also published a special report on 1.5C of warming in October 2018. The aim of these special reports is to provide an assessment on a specific issue. These special reports compliment the main Assessment Reports that the IPCC publishes every five or six years.