A recent and widely-covered report from the World Bank gives voice to ominous predictions that have been circulating among climate scientists and agriculture experts for several years: higher temperatures and weather extremes caused by climate change are on course to dramatically increase the already daunting number of Africans who don’t get enough to eat.
Indeed, the report predicts, for instance, that in just a few decades, 40 to 80 percent of the land now devoted to maize, millet and sorghum in sub-Saharan Africa could become unsuitable for these critically important staple crops.
World Bank President Jim Yong Kim has tried to stay upbeat in the face of such grim predictions.
“I do not believe that the poor are condemned to the future scientists envision in this report,” he said.
This week in Ghana, leaders from across the continent are gathering for Africa Agriculture Science Week 2013, whose theme is “Africa Feeding Africa.”
As the World Bank report shows, few things are likely to affect food self-sufficiency in Africa more than the changes in growing conditions caused by climate change.
Visit the CGIAR Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security Blog for an introduction to the story.
Photo: J. Hansen (CCAFS)