Current status + progress
In these cases,the PoU increased from onwards, and this can be linked to severe droughts driven by El Niño in — This applies only to households that spend more than half of their net income on rent. However, given variable data and resources, it is the most practical approach available to FNS. Archaeology , Art history. This flexibility helps States better target benefits to those most in need, streamline program administration and field operations, and coordinate SNAP activities with those of other programs.
Nutrition Landscape Information System (NLiS)
Nutritious, fresh foods often tend to be expensive. Thus, when household resources for food become scarce, people choose less expensive foods that are often high in calories and low in nutrients.
This is particularly true in urban settings and upper-middle and high-income countries, although the negative effect of food insecurity on diet quality has been documented in low-, middle- and high-income countries alike.
There are also psychosocial factors that link food insecurity to obesity. The experience of not having certain or adequate access to food often causes feelings of anxiety, stress and depression, which in turn can lead to behaviours that increase the risk of overweight and obesity.
Such foods have been found to have physiological effects that reduce stress in the short term. Disordered eating patterns and food deprivation are another component linking food insecurity to malnutrition.
Maternal undernutrition — as well as overweight— caused by lack of stable access to adequate diets can cause metabolic, physiological and neuroendocrine changes in children, fueling intergenerational cycle of malnutrition. The coexistence of multiple forms of malnutrition means that the two pathways described above do not work in isolation but rather impact each other. In this way, the undernutrition linked with food security might at the same time be linked with overweight and obesity.
As described, food insecurity is associated with low birthweight in infants. Low birthweight is a risk factor for child stunting, which in turn is associated with overweight and obesity later in life. There is a need to implement and scale up interventions aimed at guaranteeing access to nutritious foods and breaking the intergenerational cycle of malnutrition.
Exclusive breastfeeding in the first six months and adequate complementary foods and feeding practices up to two years of age are key to ensuring normal child growth and development during this crucial window of opportunity. Access to safe, nutritious and sufficient food must be framed as a human right, with priority given to the most vulnerable.
Policies must pay special attention to the food security and nutrition of children under five, school-age children, adolescent girls and women in order to halt the intergenerational cycle of malnutrition. A shift is needed towards nutrition-sensitive agriculture and food systems that provide safe and high quality food, promoting healthy diets for all. Last year SOFI pinpointed conflict and violence in several parts of the world as one of the main drivers of hunger and food insecurity, suggesting that efforts to fight hunger must go hand-in-hand with those to sustain peace.
They are also one of the leading causes of severe food crises. The number of extreme climate-related disasters, including extreme heat, droughts, floods and storms, has doubled since the early s. The number of extreme climate-related disasters, including extreme heat, droughts, floods and storms, has doubled since the early s, with an average of of these events occurring every year during the period of — Total number of natural disasters that occurred in low- and middle-income countries by region and during the period — Disasters are defined as medium and large scale disasters that exceed the thresholds set for registration on the EM-DAT international disaster database.
Climate variability and extremes are already negatively undermining production of major crops in tropical regions and, without adaptation, this is expected to worsen as temperatures increase and become more extreme. In many areas, climate extremes have increased in number and intensity, particularly where average temperatures are shifting upwards: Extreme heat is associated with increased mortality, lower labour capacity, lower crop yields and other consequences that undermine food security and nutrition.
In addition to increasing temperatures and changes in rainfall, the nature of rainy seasons is also changing, specifically the timing of seasonal climate events. Within-season changes may not register as extreme climate events droughts, floods or storms but rather are aspects of climate variability that affect the growth of crops and the availability of pasture for livestock, with potentially significant implications for food security and nutrition.
Several countries — notably in Africa, Central America and Southeast Asia — experienced drought, not only through abnormally low total accumulated rainfall, but also through lower rainfall intensities and fewer days of rainfall. Food security and nutrition indicators can clearly be associated with an extreme climate event, such as a severe drought, that critically challenges agriculture and food production.
Of all natural hazards, floods, droughts and tropical storms affect food production the most. Drought, in particular, causes more than 80 percent of the total damage and losses in agriculture, especially for the livestock and crop production subsectors.
In relation to extreme events, the fisheries subsector is most affected by tsunamis and storms, while most of the economic impact on forestry is caused by floods and storms. If a drought is severe and widespread enough, it can potentially affect national food availability and access, as well as nutrition, thus magnifying the prevalence of undernourishment PoU nationally.
Severe droughts are worsening global hunger and reversing progress already made. Hunger is significantly worse in countries with agricultural systems that are highly sensitive to rainfall and temperature variability and severe drought, where the livelihood of a high proportion of the population depends on agriculture and where the country does not have in place sufficient support measures to counter the fallout. In other words, for almost 36 percent of the countries that experienced a rise in undernourishment since , this coincided with the occurrence of severe agricultural drought.
Out of 27 countries with increasing change points in the prevalence of undernourishment occurring under severe drought stress conditions, most 19 countries are in Africa, with the remaining four in Asia, three in Latin America and the Caribbean, and one in Eastern Europe.
The temperature anomalies associated with El Niño show that climate variability and extremes affect agriculture. If we look at increasing change points in the PoU time series we see that many correspond to occurrences of severe drought. For example, for almost 36 percent of the countries that experienced a rise in undernourishment since , this coincided with the occurrence of severe drought.
Most striking is the significant increase in the number of change points related to severe drought conditions in — in which nearly two-thirds of the change points occurred. In these cases,the PoU increased from onwards, and this can be linked to severe droughts driven by El Niño in — A closer review reveals that many countries have witnessed periods of increased undernourishment over the past years; however, during the period of the ENSO event of — this change across so many countries contributed to a reversal of the PoU trend at the global level.
This association is further corroborated by a number of studies that show a strong link between drought and stunting in children.
For example, drought events in Bangladesh are associated with a higher stunting rate around five and nine months after the beginning of the drought event. In rural Zimbabwe, one- to two-year olds exposed to drought face significantly lower growth velocity compared to children of the same age living in areas with average rainfall. In sub-Saharan Africa, warmer and drier climates are related to declining food availability and increased prevalence estimates of childhood stunting.
Climate variability and extremes are among the key drivers behind the rise in hunger. Exposure of countries to climate variability and extremes is also a rising trend. In , the average of the PoU in countries with high exposure to climate shocks was 3. Even more striking is that countries with high exposure have more than doubled the number of undernourished people as those without high exposure.
Prevalence unweighted and number of undernourished people in low- and middle-income countries with high and low exposure to climate extremes during the period of — Countries with high exposure are defined as being exposed to climate extremes heat, drought, floods and storms for more than 66 percent of the time, i. See Annex 2 for the list of countries with high exposure to climate extremes and methodology.
The impact of climate variability and extremes on agriculture and food security: Rome, FAO, for classification of countries with high and low exposure to climate extremes; FAO for data on prevalence of undernourishment. A high dependence on agriculture, as measured by the number of people employed in the sector, leaves the PoU 9.
For low-income countries, the increase is equal to The finding is different for middle-income countries where the rise in PoU is less pronounced and occurs later from — This tends to indicate that middle-income countries were able to absorb the impacts of increased exposure to climate extremes, but may not have been able to cope as well in the — period, possibly due to the severity of exposure to El Niño. While hunger is on the rise, it is equally alarming that the number of people facing crisis-level food insecurity continues to increase.
This represents an increase compared to and , when 80 and million people, respectively, faced crisis levels. In 34 of these 51 countries, more than 76 percent of the total populations facing crisis levels of acute food insecurity or worse — nearly 95 million people — were also affected by climate shocks and extremes.
Where conflict and climate shocks occur together, the impact on acute food insecurity is more severe. In , 14 out of the 34 food-crisis countries experienced the double impact of both conflict and climate shocks, which led to significant increases in the severity of acute food insecurity.
Floods cause more climate-related disasters globally than any other extreme climate event, with flood-related disasters seeing the highest increase — 65 percent — in occurrence over the last 25 years. The frequency of storms is not increasing as much as that of floods, but storms are the second most frequent driver of climate-related disasters. Climate variability and extremes have the strongest direct impact on food availability, given the sensitivity of agriculture to climate and the primary role of the sector as a source of food and livelihoods for the rural poor.
However, the overall fallout is far more complex and greater than the impacts on agricultural productivity alone. Climate variability and extremes are undermining all dimensions of food security: Climate variability puts all aspects of food security at risk: Direct and indirect climate-driven impacts have a cumulative effect, leading to a downward spiral of increased food insecurity and malnutrition. As mentioned, an obvious impact is that climate variability and extremes negatively affect agricultural productivity, in terms of changes in crop yields the amount of agricultural production harvested per unit of land area , cropping areas area planted or harvested , or cropping intensity number of crops grown within a year.
The sectors of fisheries, aquaculture and forestry often are under-reported. Impact of disasters on forestry is generally acknowledged in assessments, although rarely quantified in monetary terms. The impact of disasters and crises on agriculture and food security In addition, climate variability and extremes also affect food imports as countries try to compensate for domestic production losses.
The impacts on production will inevitably translate into loss of income for people whose livelihoods depend on agriculture and natural resources, reducing their ability to access food. Another factor is spikes in food prices and volatility follow climate extremes. Climate anomalies, and in particular extreme events, alter agricultural yields, production and stocks.
Episodes of high food price volatility pose a major threat to food access , especially in low- and middle-income countries and among poorer groups in high-income countries. The impact of price spikes and volatility not only falls heaviest on the urban poor, but also of small-scale food producers, agriculture labourers and the rural poor who are net food buyers. Climate variability and extremes also lead to income loss for those whose livelihoods depend on agriculture and natural resources, which then negatively impact food access as households have less resources to purchase food.
Household studies provide evidence that access to food and income of small family agriculture households is negatively impacted by climate variability and extremes.
There is also evidence that climate shocks not only affect the level of income, but affect also the variability of incomes. Current Index to Statistics. Limited free search . Part of Web of Science. Contains 7 discipline-specific subsets. Extensive research database including publications, grants, patents, and clinical trials. Dimensions is a collaborative project of six Digital Science portfolio companies: Directory of Open Access Journals.
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