Climate Change Research ›› 2020, Vol. 16 ›› Issue (1): 37-49.doi: 10.12006/j.issn.1673-1719.2019.285

• New Scientific Understanding on Climate Change and Land • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Advances in scientific understanding on climate change and food security from IPCC special report SRCCL

Yin-Long XU1,Yun-Cheng ZHAO1,Pan-Mao ZHAI2   

  1. 1 Institute of Environment and Sustainable Development in Agriculture, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing 100081, China
    2 State Key Laboratory of Severe Weather, Chinese Academy of Meteorological Science, Beijing 100081, China
  • Received:2019-11-30 Revised:2019-12-24 Online:2020-01-30 Published:2020-01-15


Food security is widely affected from climate change not only on food production quantity but also on food quality, and the cascading effects on farmers’ livelihood as well as the food value chain; in the meanwhile, a series of environmental consequences, including agricultural greenhouse gases (GHGs) emission to enhance the global warming, has been resulted from the food system for the food security. An IPCC special report on climate change and land (SRCCL) has been published in August 2019, the report systematically assessed the impacts of climate change on the whole value chain of food production, processing, storage, transportation, and consumption, as well as the impacts of food system on climate change with the enhanced warming from agricultural GHG emissions, the supply-side and demand-side adaptations and mitigations as well as the synergy and trade-offs between them, and the policy environment for food security. It is concluded from SRCCL that about 21%-37% of total global anthropogenic GHG emissions are attributable to the food system due to the increased use of N fertilizer and water, etc., agriculture and food system are key to global climate change responses, integrated measures in supply-side and demand-side can reduce food loss and waste then result in the reduction of GHG emissions, and help build a resilient food system. The future work for the food system coping with climate change should be focusing on how to enrich and expand the assessments on climate change impacts on agriculture and food system, quantify the adaptation effects, increase the scientific understanding on synergies and trade-offs of adaptation and mitigation, and enhance the capacity building with specified issues.

Key words: Climate change, Food security, Impacts, Adaptation, Mitigation, Synergy, Trade-off

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