Climate Change Effects 2019: Food Sources Expected To Dwindle

As climate change gets worse, its effects start becoming bigger and bigger, affecting everything from nature to wildlife, to people and even the way the natural world works.

Its recent victim? Our food sources. More specifically, crops, livestock and farmlands in Nebraska, which have suffered a disastrous loss back in March due to record-breaking floodwaters trampling over the plains. Plains have always been subject to natural flooding due to its geographic placement, yet the one that ravaged Nebraska reached levels that were never seen before.

According to The Nebraska Department of Agriculture, it’s been estimated that the total value of both livestock and crops that were lost can easily surpass $800 million. That’s just the estimated number for the cattle and main crops, which include corns, soybeans, dry beans and wheat. How much the farmers lost when it comes to the cost of livelihood who have no idea if they’ll be able to farm again in the future is an entirely different story.

“We can expect to see more of this,” sid Peter de Menocal, Ph.D., the director of the Center for Climate and Life at the Columbia University.

While the devastating floodwaters have already receded and went down, the alert levels in Nebraska remained up, with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration warning that this historic and widespread flooding will persist until the end of this month, and possibly even in June.

Decreasing food sources

Perhaps the biggest takeaway from the recent flood is that climate change has now started affecting our food sources, something which we don’t have an unlimited supply of. The food source isn’t just in danger of being flooded, however, since other factors that threaten it have started showing up as well.

For one thing, the soil has started changing, too, having fewer nutrients than before. The heat waves in the air are also a big factor, as well as the rising CO2 component of the air, which causes plants to enjoy less nutritional value.

“If we don’t cut greenhouse gas emissions, we are in very serious trouble. But other tactics must happen together at the same time,” Mike Rivington, Ph.D., who researches land use at James Hutton Institute in Scotland, said.

Climate change Pictured: A dead fish lies in the sand at the San Luis Reservoir July 16, 2007 in Gustine, California. David Paul Morris/Getty Images