The International Food Policy Research Institute recently released an excellent report on the potential impacts of climate change on agricultural production in developing countries and the costs of adaptation, Nelson, et al., Climate Change: Impact on Agriculture and Costs of Adaptation (2009).
The key take-aways from the study are as follows:
- Climate change could result in massive increases in world prices for most important agricultural crops,a total for 32-37% or rice, 52-55% for mazie, 94-111% for wheat, and 11-14% for soybeans; even if the carbon fertilization effect helps, 2050 prices are only reduced by 10% from this level; livestock prices would also increase by 60%;
- Climate change substantially reduces crop production; in South Asia, there is a projected 14% decline in rice prodcution, a 44-49% decline in wheat production, and a 9-19%fall in maize production; in Sub-Saharan AFrica, rice, wehat nd maize decline by 15%, 34% and 10%, respectively. The results for East Asia and the Pacific are mixed;
- Calorie availability in 2050 declines relative to 2000 levels throughout the world, with the average consumer in developing countries facing a 10% reduction in caloric intake by 2050;
- The costs of adaptation responses to return childhood malnutrition numbers to the no-climate change scenario is estimated at approximately $7 billion annually, with the vast majority for rural roads. Other requisite responses include increased agricultural research and irrigation investments;