A group of scientists from the UK published a new study in the scientific journal “The Lancet” on Wednesday that pointed out the grim possibility of food scarcity leading to 500,000 deaths a year by 2050. The study has found that climate change can affect agriculture so badly that it could lead to a global unavailability of food and cause malnutrition.
According to the research, the limited supply of would force people to cut down on their consumption of fruits, vegetables and meat, causing malnutrition. The predictions have been drawn on food availability in 155 countries, where severe climate changes will result in the decline of food consumption by 4 percent within 2050. However, red meat consumption is expected to drop by a much smaller amount that is by 0.7 percent.
“We found that in 2050 these changes could be responsible for around 529,000 extra deaths,” the News Corp quoted Marco Springmann, from Oxford University, as saying in a statement. “We looked at the health effects of changes in agricultural production that are likely to result from climate change and found that even modest reductions in the availability of food per person could lead to changes in the energy content and composition of diets, and these changes will have major consequences for health.”
Climate experts have been warning against the impacts of severe climate changes for long. If immediate measures are not taken to curb it, drought, extreme temperatures and other climatic changes can affect the agriculture in some regions. This can lead to global food shortage as the demand for food continues to rise, the Washington Post reported.
The group of scientists who conducted the research not only studied how climate changes would affect food consumption in the future but also how these changes in the diet would affect the rate of human mortality. It is now a known fact that the diet affects the health in many ways and malnutrition or improper diet can lead to a number of serious illnesses.
“The health effects of climate change from changes in dietary and weight-related risk factors could be substantial, and exceed other climate-related health impacts that have been estimated,” read the new study published in the Lancet. “Climate change mitigation could prevent many climate-related deaths. Strengthening of public health programmes aimed at preventing and treating diet and weight-related risk factors could be a suitable climate change adaptation strategy.”