The world needs to urgently cut its planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions to avoid a “perfect storm” that will lead to simultaneous falls in food production from both farming and marine fisheries, researchers said.
If emissions continue to rise rapidly, nearly “90% of the world’s population … are projected to be exposed to losses of food production in both sectors” by 2100, according to a new study here by researchers from countries such as France, the United States and Canada.
This amounts to about 7.2 billion people. In contrast, less than 3% of the population, or 0.2 billion people, live in regions that would experience simultaneous productivity gains.
“Climate change has put humanity on a dangerous path that will become increasingly difficult to reverse if greenhouse gas emissions are not taken much more seriously,” Lauric Thiault, the paper’s co-author, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
Almost 200 countries agreed in Paris in 2015 to curb temperature rises caused by burning fossil fuels, felling forests and other activities that emit greenhouse gases.
But economic development and industrialization around the world has resulted in an expansion of fossil fuel infrastructure, such as power plants and pipelines.
Earlier this week, a report by the World Meteorological Organization said greenhouse gases in the atmosphere hit a new record in 2018.