Washington, Jan 19 (PTI) The Earth will be 2.4 degreeCelsius warmer by 2020 if the world continues with thebusiness-as-usual approach to climate change and India wouldbe one of the hardest hit countries witnessing upto 30 percent reduction in crop yields, a new study has claimed.
The rising temperatures will adversely affect the world''sfood production and India would be the hardest hit, accordingto the analysis by the Universal Ecological Fund (FEU-US), theUS subsidiary of FEU founded in Argentina in 1990.
The report titled ''The Food Gap -- The Impacts of ClimateChange on Food Production: A 2020 Perspective'' predicted thatcrop yield in India, the second largest world producer of riceand wheat, would fall up to 30 per cent by the end of thisdecade.
The report, however, noted that the impacts of climatechange would vary from region to region. While central andsouthern region would witness adverse impacts, the impactscould be beneficial for East and South-East Asia, the reportpredicted.
The two most populated countries in the world, India andChina, would experience different impacts. While India couldsee a fall in its crop yield, China -- the largest producer ofrice and wheat in the world -- is expected to increase itscrop yields up to 20 per cent, said the report.
However, the overall impact of a warmer planet on globalfood production would be massive, said the report, adding thatthe most significant impacts would be on the top 20 producersof each of the four crops: wheat, rice, maize and soybean,respectively.
It has predicted that global wheat production during thattime would experience a 14 per cent deficit between productionand demand; while there will be an 11 per cent deficit in riceproduction and 9 per cent in maize (corn) production. Soybeanis the only crop showing an increase in global production,with an estimated 5 per cent surplus, the report said.
"The evidence that man-made greenhouse gases would causethe temperature of the planet to rise has been available foralmost two decades. The IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel onClimate Change) Fourth Assessment Report (2007) has concludedthat, unequivocally, the Earth''s warming is anthropogenic(man-made)," said FEU scientific adviser Dr Osvaldo Canziani,the former Co-Chair of Working Group II of the IPCC.
The analysis and data utilised to produce the report isbased on key documents already published by the IPCC and otherUN agencies.
"The key to our report was to analyse, synthesise andupdate published documents and data from disparate sources andpresent it in an accessible way," Liliana Hisas, ExecutiveDirector of FEU-US and author of the report, said.