Climate Change: one of the causes of increasing hunger

UN assured that after years of decline the world hunger rose in 2016

Climate Change: one of the causes of increasing hunger

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) released a report that showed that in 2016, 11% of the world population went hungry. According to the report, it was due to climate change and violent conflicts and make that around 815 million people passed hunger last year. It is a step backwards in the hunger mitigation. Since 1990 the international community had work reducing this problematic with positive results, cutting it in half. For 2030, the UN planned to end hunger entirely. However this is the first time in years that hunger increases.

Since 2010 state base conflicts increased 60% and armed conflict within countries, 125%.

According to the research, the reasons for the increase of the number of hungry people are natural disasters linked to climate change and the conflicts in many parts of the world.

FAO: the rise of the number of violent conflicts around the world hits rural communities the hardest and have a negative impact on food production and availability

The most vulnerable population to the increase of the hunger are children under 5 years old. Lack of food can develop growth disorders (near 155 million children). Other diseases that affect the entire malnourished population are anemia and, paradoxically, obesity. 

Violence and conflicts

Although the frequency of wars had decrease in recent decades to reach an all-time low in 2005, in recent years there has been an increase of violent conflicts and conflict-related deaths. Since 2010 state-based conflicts have increased by 60%, and armed conflict within countries by 125%.

The FAO assured that over the past ten years, "the number of violent conflicts around the world has increased significantly, in particular in countries already facing food insecurity, hitting rural communities the hardest and having a negative impact on food production and availability". The United Nations is worried that the current trends are likely to continue over coming years.

Climate change implications

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations explained that the food insecurity and malnutrition tend to be magnified where natural hazards such as droughts and floods compound the consequences of conflicts. FAO assured that "natural disasters are likely to increase with climate change, as climate change not only threatens food insecurity and malnutrition, but can also contribute to further downward deterioration into conflict, protracted crisis and continued fragility".

It is considered that over the past 60 years, 40% of civil wars have been associated to natural resources. Since 2000, 48% of civil conflicts in Africa are in contexts where access to rural land is essential.

The FAO report also assured that it would not be enough to make agriculture more productive to eliminate hunger in the world. The international organization said it is essential to increase the options available to the rural population. The organization is skeptical that hunger and all forms of malnutrition will end by 2030 unless all the factors that undermine food security are addressed.


Latin American Post | Santiago Gómez Hernández

Copy edited by Laura Rocha Rueda 

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