Rising temperatures mean more pests and lower yields
As global temperatures rise, crop starts will also increase significantly. This is primarily about corn, wheat and rice, which are the food staple for billions of people. Rising temperatures will accelerate metabolism and growth of pest populations, new research indicates.
Researchers at the University of Vermont estimated how toob growing insect populationow on an increasingly warmer Earth will affect crop yields. Climate warming will result in greater energy consumption by insects, forcing them to consume more.
According to calculations, a one-degree increase in temperature will result in greater losses in wheat, rice and corn crops worldwide by 10-25 percent. Researchers also predict an increase in pest populationsow, which will certainly put pressure on farmers.
– Climate change will have a negative impact on crops. We will observe increased pest activityow – said Scott Merrill of the University of Vermont, wsporoutor of a study published in „Science”.
The changes will primarily affect the region ofow with temperate climates. An increase in the global average temperature of just 2 degrees will result in total crop losses in corn, rice and wheat of about 213 millionow tons per year – say scientists. Corn, wheat and rice are food staples for the billionthoin people around the world.
Losses will result from the insect’s increased metabolismow and the faster population growth rate of the insectow. The link to metabolism is simple – assessed Merril. – When temperatures rise, the metabolism of insectsow increases along with it, so they have to eat more. This will certainly affect crops – admitted.
The relationship to population growth, however, is more complex. Insects have an optimal temperature, in which theorej their population is growing the fastest. If the temperature is too low or too high, the population will grow more slowly. Therefore, losses will be greatest in temperate regions, but less severe in the tropics.
– Regions with temperate climates do not currently have optimal temperatures (for insectow), so if the temperature there increases, their populations will grow faster. Insects living in the tropics are already near optimal temperatures, so their populations will grow more slowly – explained Merrill.
Wheat will suffer the most, ktora usually grown in colder climates. This will be the cause of larger insect populationsow and their higher metabolism. Warming will affect corn and rice crops to a lesser extent. In the case of rice, if temperatures rise by more than 3 st., starts could stabilize. Rice is grown mainlyownie in warm tropical environments. An increase of more than 3 st. will cause the temperature to be for insectoin too high – i.e., population growth will decline, but zroThis balances out the increased metabolism of the pestow.
– Our research shows the importance of collecting more data on how pests will affect crop losses in a warming world, said Curtis Deutsch of the University of Washington, co-oroutor of the publication.
France, China and the United States, ktore produce most of the world’s corn, are among the countriesoin whichohe greatest increase in crop losses is expected in the. France and China are also majorown the major producers of wheat and rice, so a warming climate will affect them the most.
Reduced yields in these three basic crops are particularolny problem. Their total consumption provides 42. proc. calories consumed by people around the world. Increased yield lossesow will cause a decline in food security, particularolnie in those parts of the world whereorich already occurs. This could lead to conflictow on this background.
As for the increased activity of the pestow farmers will react? They can postpone planting dates or switch to new, more resistant crop varieties, but they will have to roalso find ways to deal with the army of pestow, which will likely mean using more pesticideow.