Global food crisis must be solved alongside climate crisis: Leaders

Global food crisis must be solved alongside climate crisis: Leaders

Davos: The war in Ukraine has exacerbated food insecurity worldwide due to precarious supply chains, increased fertiliser prices and blocked grain exports, leaders said at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting here on Tuesday and called for resolving the global food crisis alongside the climate crisis.

Instability in Ukraine is threatening to intensify an already precarious global food security outlook.

Increasing prices of fertilisers and inaccessibility of Ukrainian exports have made a delicate situation potentially dire, as 800 million people are now estimated to go hungry each night. Russian blockades of Ukrainian ports have further intensified world leaders' focus on worsening food insecurity.

"Failure to open the ports is a declaration of war on global food security," said David Beasley, Executive Director, United Nations World Food Programme.

The pandemic had already complicated global efforts to reduce famine and food insecurity, and those challenges have only intensified with the conflict in Ukraine.

"We're taking food from the hungry to give to the starving," said Beasley about the recent conditions.

At a panel discussion, leaders also said food insecurity is a problem not only for public health but also for geopolitics and security.

There is a risk that short-term efforts to combat food shortages could come at the expense of meeting climate and sustainability targets, given the interconnection between agriculture and climate change.

Global food production contributes more than a third of greenhouse gas emissions, and efforts to ramp up food supply could worsen emissions and reliance on fossil fuels.

Innovative technologies and regenerative techniques can improve agricultural productivity, according to experts.

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