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FAO Food price index (FFPI) FAO Food price index (FFPI)
The current world food crisis is the result of the combined effects of competition for cropland from the growth in biofuels, low cereal stocks, high oil prices, speculation in food markets and extreme weather events. The crisis has resulted in a several-fold increase in several central commodity prices, driven 110 million people into poverty and added 44 million more to the already undernourished. Information on the role and constraints of t...
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Crushed by war and world conflicts Crushed by war and world conflicts
Conflicts increase the risk of food supply instability tremendously (Figure 31). Countries in conflict and post-conflict situations tend to be food insecure, with more than 20% of the population, and in many cases far more, lacking access to adequate food (IFPRI, 2006). The group of countries that are experiencing civil conflicts cannot meet their basic needs and are large importers of food. In addition, the transport of commodities is haz...
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Country income groups (World Bank classification) Country income groups (World Bank classification)
There are huge regional differences in the above trends. Globally, poverty rates have fallen from 52% in 1981 to 42% in 1990 and to 26% in 2005. In Sub-Saharan Africa, however, the poverty rate remained constant at around 50%. This region also comprises the majority of countries making the least progress in reducing child malnutrition. The poverty rate in East Asia fell from nearly 80% in 1980 to under 20% by 2005. East Asia, notably China,...
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Water requirements for food production 1960-2050 Water requirements for food production 1960-2050
The requirements for water in agriculture will need to increase in order to meet the Millennium Development Goal 1, target 2 'Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people who suffer from hunger'. To decrease hunger the outputs in agriculture will need to increase, and thus the water use.
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Market access (estimated travel time) in agricultural areas Market access (estimated travel time) in agricultural areas
Accessibility to food is also determined by the long-term trend in food prices (which is a different issue from price volatility). The rising trend in global food prices is likely to persist in the next decade. In the long run, however, prices will decline (OECD-FAO, 2008).
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Agricultural trends, production, fertilisers, irrigation and pesticides Agricultural trends, production, fertilisers, irrigation and pesticides
Figure 8: Global trends (1960–2005) in cereal and meat production, use of fertilizer, irrigation and pesticides. (Source: Tilman, 2002; FAO, 2003; International Fertilizer Association, 2008; FAOSTAT, 2009).
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Projected agriculture in 2080 due to climate change Projected agriculture in 2080 due to climate change
With our climate changes, we have to adapt our ways to a new environment – in most cases warmer and possibly wetter and drier. Projections on the climate in the future provide some guidance for us, but how can we create models for how the human society reacts? This map presents a rough idea of changes in agricultural output from increased temperatures, precipitation differences and also from carbon fertilization for plants. Projecting climate is ...
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Trends in mean depth of fish catches Trends in mean depth of fish catches
Food losses in the field (between planting and harvesting) could be as high as 20–40% of the potential harvest in developing countries due to pests and pathogens (Kader, 2005). Postharvest losses vary greatly among commodities and production areas and seasons. In the United States, the losses of fresh fruits and vegetables have been estimated to range from 2% to 23%, depending on the commodity, with an overall average of about 12% losses b...
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Projected land use changes Projected land use changes
A central component in preventing loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services, such as provisioning of water, from expanding agricultural production is to limit the trade-off between economic growth and biodiversity by stimulating agricultural productivity and more efficient land use. Further enhancement of agricultural productivity (‘closing the yield gap’) is the key factor in reducing the need for land and, consequently, the rate of bio...
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Trends in world agricultural exports Trends in world agricultural exports
The availability of food within a specific country can be guaranteed in two ways: Either by food production in the country itself or by trade. The first option has been discussed extensively in the previous chapters. The second option has become more and more important (Figure 29), with increasing transport possibilities and storing capacities and the growing challenges faced by some countries in their domestic production, including becaus...
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Selected drought events in Africa, 1981-1999, and livestock impacts Selected drought events in Africa, 1981-1999, and livestock impacts
Water scarcity in terms of drought or depleted groundwater could therefore have great impacts on livestock and rangelands. These interactions are also complex. While drought can directly threaten livestock, other factors that influence water availability for livestock are seasonal droughts and socio-economic changes, such as permanent settlement and occupation of seasonal pastures by people other than pastoralists, availability and quality...
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Trends in urban and rural populations, less developed regions, 1960-2030 (estimates and projections) Trends in urban and rural populations, less developed regions, 1960-2030 (estimates and projections)
According to the latest UN estimates, almost all of the world’s population growth between 2000 and 2030 will be concentrated in urban areas in developing countries (Figure 32). By 2030, almost 60% of the people in developing countries will live in cities (FAO, 2003). If present trends continue, urban population will equal rural population by around 2017.
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Biofuels production 2005, by country (ethanol and biodiesel) Biofuels production 2005, by country (ethanol and biodiesel)
Production of crops for biofuels also competes with food production (Banse et al., 2008). Indeed, the corn equivalent of the energy used on a few minutes drive could feed a person for a day, while a full tank of ethanol in a large 4-wheel drive suburban utility vehicle could almost feed one person for a year. A recent OECD-FAO (2007) report expected food prices to rise by between 20% and 50% by 2016 partly as a result of biofuels. Already,...
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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A photographic impression of the gradual changes in two ecosystem types A photographic impression of the gradual changes in two ecosystem types
Globally, over 1,000 (87%) of a total of 1,226 threatened bird species are impacted by agriculture. More than 70 species are affected by agricultural pollution, 27 of them seriously. Europe’s farmland birds have declined by 48% in the past 26 years (European Bird Census Council, 2008). Pesticides and herbicides pose a threat to 37 threatened bird species globally (BirdLife, 2008), in addition to deleterious effects of agricultural chemica...
02 Feb 2009 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Centralized or decentralized? - Uganda. A study case Centralized or decentralized? - Uganda. A study case
Looking at the costs and benefits, centralized systems may not be the answer in terms of best result for the investment. The chart on the left shows that the financial NPV does not change with increasing population size for centralized sewage and wastewater connection, however the economic NPV (which includes benefits to health and the environment) shows a positive trend with increas- ing populations. Centralized systems therefore generate a grea...
01 Mar 2010 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Water for food Water for food
The volume of water required to produce different food products varies enourmously, as do the waste products.
01 Mar 2010 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Consumption of harvested meat/fish in Inuit Households (Canada) Consumption of harvested meat/fish in Inuit Households (Canada)
The harvest of natural resources is a key feature of traditional lifestyles and economies throughout the Arctic, and a continuing reliance on it as a mainstay of indigenous existence in the north is evident. Environmental change in Arctic regions is a key contributing factor to changing Inuit subsistence patterns. As examples, the Inuit speak of the thinning of the ice which makes hunting more challenging; species they once relied upon are disapp...
17 Mar 2010 - by Hugo Ahlenius, GRID-Arendal & CAFF
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Distribution and current trend of polar bear subpopulations throughout the circumpolar Arctic Distribution and current trend of polar bear subpopulations throughout the circumpolar Arctic
Polar bears occur in 19 relatively discrete subpopulations with an estimated worldwide abundance of 20,000– 25,000 animals. Our knowledge of the status and trend of each subpopulation varies due to availability, reliability, and age of data. Furthermore, for many subpopulations, there is limited or no data collected over a sufficient period of time to examine trends. Based on a 2009 review of the worldwide status of polar bears, one of 19 subpopu...
17 Mar 2010 - by Hugo Ahlenius, GRID-Arendal & CAFF
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Arctic sea ice food web - schematic illustration Arctic sea ice food web - schematic illustration
Sea ice represents a unique ecosystem in the Arctic, providing habitat to specialized iceassociated species that include microorganisms, fish, birds, and marine mammals. Individual species use sea ice in different ways depending on their biological needs. Ice algae form the base of the food web. Some algae stay attached to the bottom of the ice, some fall into the water column, and some fall to the bottom of the sea, and so provide food for speci...
17 Mar 2010 - by Hugo Ahlenius, GRID-Arendal & CAFF
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Trends in local meat-and fish in NWT Trends in local meat-and fish in NWT
The harvest of natural resources is a key feature of traditional lifestyles and economies throughout the Arctic, and a continuing reliance on it as a mainstay of indigenous existence in the north is evident. According to Northwest Territories, Canada (NWT) Labour surveys, about 37–45% of NWT residents went hunting or fishing in 2002. This has changed little since the first survey in 1983, and is high compared to southern Canada. About 40–60% of...
17 Mar 2010 - by Hugo Ahlenius, GRID-Arendal & CAFF
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