Action needed now to enhance nutrition in the face of climate change
By 2050, about half of the world’s population is at risk of being undernourished as a result of rising food demand and a potentially compromised supply affected by climate change. By 2100, up to 40% of the world’s land surface will have to adapt to altered climates. In each decade through to 2050, agricultural output is projected to fall by 2%, while food demand will rise by 14%. Urgent policy action is needed to link food system resilience with higher quality diets and nutrition.
“The world needs agriculture to be climate-smart and also nutrition-smart. We need to meet the needs of communities and nations in these shifting climates and must work to create agriculture and food production systems that are diverse, efficient and resilient,” adds President Kufuor, Co-Chair of the Global Panel and former President of Ghana.
Promoting higher production of staple crops will not be enough to make agriculture more resilient to climate change. While evidence of effective climate change actions remains scarce there is ample evidence already of how diets and food systems are adversely affected by weather shocks and price volatility. Climate-smart actions which support nutrition means focussing on diverse, high quality and healthy diets.
“Climate change is creating the conditions in which we have to find a way to provide nutrition to a growing global population. This means that we need to come together as an agriculture, nutrition and public health community to find solutions to what is becoming a growing problem,” comments Rachel Kyte, Global Panel member and World Bank Climate Change Envoy.
Ahead of the Paris climate negotiations, Climate-smart food systems for enhanced nutrition explains the challenges of meeting both agricultural and nutritional needs in the face of climate change. It identifies specific opportunities for policy change that can simultaneously enhance food and nutrition security.