Climate is one of the main factors which controls what natural resources we have and is an important element of sustainable development. Agriculture and water resources are intrinsically linked with climate.
If the buildup of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere continues, global warming is bound, sooner or later, to warm the Earth's surface sufficiently to affect regional climates. Global warming is also expected to change the patterns of climate variability and increase the occurrence of extreme weather events. There is now concern that climate change has the potential to affect food production, crop pests and diseases and production costs. The negative impacts are expected to fall disproportionately on the poor.
In this 'basics' section of the Food and Climate unit, we will explain how changes in climate might affect food production. We will also look at the ways in which climate affects plant growth and food production systems around the world.