Climate Change

Nelson et al, 2009, Climate Change: Impact on Agriculture and Costs of Adaptation, IPRI
Millennium ecosystem assessment, 2005. Ecosystems and human well-being: synthesis. Washington: Island Press

Agriculture is vulnerable to climate change and changes in temperature and rainfall is expected to impact negatively on crop yields, especially in developing countries. Climate-change simulations project higher temperatures in 2050. In some regions the higher evaporation leads to increased precipitation as this water vapor returns to earth. With the increased temperature, the demands of water increase for irrigated crop production.

With climate change, calorie availability is predicted to decline and impact regions throughout the world. Prices for the most important agricultural crops will increase by 2050, driven by population and income growth, but also by the impact of climate change. The effects of climate change increases rates of child malnutrition and reduces calorie consumption dramatically.

Agriculture is estimated to produce a high percentage of global greenhouse gas emissions (including deforestation activities). In more detail:

Carbon dioxide

It is estimated that 20% of CO2 emissions came from changes in land use and land management, primarily deforestation.


30% of emissions are due to agriculture (ruminant animals and rice paddies)

Nitrous oxide

Use of fertilizer accounts for about 35% of N2O emissions.