Crop Suitability of The Earth (1981 to 2100) from MapX™, a combined Google™/UNEP/Biodiversity Lab project. We have shown this data before on IReallyAppreciateScience.com, but many believe “things have changed” since the COVID-19 Pandemic and the downturn in the global economy. They have not. Deepest Brown is a change of -90%. Deepest Green is a change of +90%. 16 crops were used in this particularly global study. Take a look.
Human-Driven Climate Change
Changing conditions determine the land’s suitability for agriculture. The growing demand for food, feed, fiber and bioenergy increases pressure on both the land and ecosystems, causing trade-offs between different land uses and services. Accordingly, an inventory is required on the changing potentially suitable areas for agriculture under changing climate conditions.
MapX and the UN Environmental Programme applied a fuzzy logic approach to compute global agricultural suitability to grow the 16 most important food and energy crops according to the climatic, soil and topographic conditions at a spatial resolution of 30 arc seconds. The results for current climate conditions (1981–2010), considering today’s irrigated areas and separately investigate the suitability of densely forested as well as protected areas, in order to investigate their potentials for agriculture. The impact of human-driven climate change under what is known as SRES A1B carbon emissions or Business-as-usual conditions [A future world of very rapid economic growth, low population growth and rapid introduction of new and more efficient technology. Major underlying themes are economic and cultural convergence and capacity building, with a substantial reduction in regional differences in per capita income. In this world, people pursue personal wealth rather than environmental quality], as simulated by the global climate model ECHAM5, on agricultural suitability is shown by comparing the time-period (2071–2100) with (1981–2010) or simple designated “1981-2100.”
Results demonstrate that human-driven climate change will expand suitable cropland by additionally 5.6 million km², particularly in some Northern high latitudes (mainly in Canada, China and Russia). Most sensitive regions with decreasing suitability are found in the Eastern Ukraine (formerly known as the ‘Breadbasket of Russia’), and in the Southwestern United States (California particularly the coastline, and the states of Arizona, New Mexico, and in Western Texas), the Global South, mainly in tropical regions fronted by mangroves and wetlands where also the suitability for multiple cropping decreases. There are Great Winners and Great Losers.
Reference: Global Agricultural Land Resources – A High Resolution Suitability Evaluation and Its Perspectives until 2100 under Climate Change Conditions
* Florian Zabel ,
* Birgitta Putzenlechner,
* Wolfram Mauser