BEACON TRANSCRIPT – Climate change threatens food security according to a warning issued by the United Nations this week. The organization considers that climate change represents a serious and distinct threat to food security and might expose an additional 600 million people worldwide to malnutrition by the year 2080 if preemptive measures are not taken to address the issue.
In a recent news release, the UN Special Rapporteur on the right of food Hilal Elver has explained that rising temperatures and sea levels as well as the increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather and other issues such as floods and droughts have a serious impact on the right of food.
The representative stated that all of the aforementioned climate incidents will have a negative impact on crops as well as livestock or fisheries and aquacultures. This will also affect and threaten people’s livelihoods. Hilal Elver also warned that large-scale production oriented agricultural models are not a correct response to the food demand as they are not a solution to the problem.
A major change of focus from industrial agriculture to other transformative systems is required in order to assure the sustainability of the environment and support both farmers and local food movements. This refocus towards systems like agro-ecology will also protect food democracy and preserve local cultural traditions as well as respect human rights and offer people easier access to a healthy diet.
According to Ms. Elver, the people that contribute least to climate change and global warming will unfortunately also be the ones who are set to suffer the most because of the ill effects of these issues.
Although urgent measures need to be taken to respond to the problems brought on by climate change, the UN representative also stressed the importance of taking into account and protecting the right to food and other fundamental human rights when applying mitigation and adaptation policies in order to address the issue.
The Special Rapporteur’s conclusions and recommendations were made in the wake of the UN climate change conference due to take place between the 30th of November and the 11th of December this year in Paris, France.
The purpose of the conference is to agree to a universally applicable legal device that can be then used to reduce worldwide greenhouse gas emissions. This much needed intervention will rely on utilizing a human rights approach in order to instate a climate change agreement that will aim to ensure food security and climate justice for all people.
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