IPCC Warns Climate Change Will Damage Food Production in South America

 IPCC Warns Climate Change Will Damage Food Production in South America

The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warned of the likely decline in the food production in South America due to climate change, and said other risks such as increased droughts and floods.

Thus concludes the report presented in Yokohama (Tokyo) and produced by about 500 scientific experts and political representatives, which examines current knowledge about climate change and the impact of this process on man and nature in different regions of the world.

It is «one of the more extensive scientific history reports» which includes «strong evidence from all disciplines», he said to present the document at a press conference the Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), Michel Jarraud.

The expert said that «there is no doubt that the climate is changing», and added that «95 per cent of this change is due to human activity».

The document presented by the IPCC analyses the effects of climate change today, medium-term – between 2030 and 2040 – and long term (2080-2100), and this takes into account an increase in global warming of between 2 and 4 degrees Celsius, based on current projections.

In the case of South America, climate change will result in «a decline of production and the quality of the food», according to the report.

The production of corn, wheat and rice «has already suffered significant declines in different regions of the world in recent years», said the Vice-Chairman of the Working Group of the UN, Chris Field, who warned of falling in this sense of the between 5 and 10% by 2030 and up to 25% to 2050.

Therefore, the expert panel proposes to political leaders who support the development of new types of crops are better adapted to climate change and to support «systems and practices of indigenous traditional knowledge», among other measures to strengthen food security and public health.

In Central America, climate change will reduce the availability of water in semi-arid and thaw-dependent areas, while in other urban and rural regions extreme rainfall will cause flooding and landslides, according to the report.

In the case of North America, global warming will raise the likelihood of heat waves, periods of drought and forest fires in different areas of the subcontinent, which will have consequences as «human mortality increase» above all because of the extreme temperatures.

On the other hand, an increase of floods in coastal and urban areas is expected, which will lead to «material and natural damage and consequences on public health and the food chain».

In addition, there is a «high probability» that the drinking water quality getting worse due to the increase of the sea level, extreme rainfall and cyclones, according to the report.