Climate change threatens African farmland -study
Tue Jun 2, 2009 8:00pm EDT
By Jasmin MelvinWASHINGTON
(Reuters) - Climate change could cost the African continent more farmland than the United States uses to plant its eight major field crops combined, according to a study published in the June issue of Environmental Science and Policy.
Farming on up to 1 million square kilometers (247 million acres) of land in Africa could subside by 2050 as climate change makes areas too hot and dry for growing crops, the study said.
The latest U.S. Agriculture Department data puts plantings of the eight major U.S. field crops combined at 246 million acres for the coming year.
Though unsuitable for crops, the land could still sustain livestock, which are more tolerant to heat and drought, researchers from the Nairobi-based International Livestock Research Institute and the United Kingdom's Waen Associates found.
Boosting livestock production could provide the 20 million to 35 million people living in these areas with a means to stay on their land and make an income, researchers said.
"Livestock can provide poor households with a buffer against the risk of climate change and allow them to take advantage of the increasing demand for animal products in Africa," said Philip Thornton, a scientist at the Institute and co-author of the paper. Read More
Personally, I haven’t seen any evidence that suggests man has caused the climate to change. The climate has been changing for millions of years and I highly doubt it’s going to stop changing now. However, for those that have fallen for this hoax, especially the animal rights activists, this should pose a quandary. Assuming climate change is here and only livestock will be able to be raised in parts of Africa, rather than crops, groups like HSUS that are trying to abolish animal agriculture will be eliminating these people’s only means of growing food. But maybe it wouldn’t be much of a quandary after all. Animal rights groups have always put the welfare of animals over humans, so if some people have to die in order to save a few goats then so be it.