Posted by: Peter Black | August 18, 2008

How Climate Change is Expected to Affect Agriculture

Projected Agricultural Productivity in 2080


Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal, created this interesting map showing what is the outlook for world agriculture circa 2080. According to this map, the agricultural productivity in the southern US is expected to decline precipitously: between 15 and 50% while the northern US will conversely be more productive.

What jumps out at me, however, is how the equitorial regions are predicted to suffer. This week, our staff is in Accra, Ghana, to discuss how equitorial nations can get paid to end deforestation, a major player in the greenhouse gas sweepstakes (20% globally). While deforestation happens for many reasons, one of the major reasons is the expansion of agriculture. Eventually, greenhouse gases released during deforestation could ironically and tragically reduce the amount of arable farmland available in equitorial nations.

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