Averting a global crisis is possible but the window is closing
International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) has feared that if the adverse impacts of the climate change remain unaddressed, 80 million more people may become food-insecure by 2050.
In a statement issued on Sunday, on the eve of the United Nations Climate Action Summit 2019 that begins in New York on Monday, the IFPRI Director General Shenggen Fan said: “Agri-food systems have been central to recent unprecedented reductions in poverty, hunger, and undernutrition. Yet agri-food systems face mounting climate impacts that threaten their ability to feed a growing population, all the while global hunger and food insecurity are once again on the rise.”
The head of the Washington-based food policy think tank also noted: “Furthermore, IFPRI’s projections indicate that, if unaddressed, climate change may make 80 million more people food-insecure by 2050, mostly in the global South.”
Averting a global crisis is possible but the window is closing, said Shenggen Fan further adding: “Implementing the right evidence-based policies and investments is urgently needed. Research to inform these policies and investments will be crucial, particularly considering declining funding to agricultural research in Africa, which threatens to decrease productivity and increase risks of food insecurity and malnutrition, migration, deforestation, and biodiversity loss.”
His statement also read: “In order to meet the Global Commission’s call to action, the CGIAR, the world’s largest agriculture research network, will need greater support to continue supporting 300 million small-scale farmers and to feed the world nutritiously to withstand the impacts of climate change. To meet the challenges that confront billions of people around the world, the key is to begin scaling up solutions now.”
In a separate statement issued on the same day IFPRI Director (Environment, Production and Technology Division), Channing Arndt said: “Food systems worldwide face unprecedented production, resource preservation, climate adaptation, and climate mitigation challenges - threatening the livelihoods of billions, particularly the poor. The good news is we have a system for confronting these challenges.”