Water scarcity could hit food supply
Current trends in food production and consumption could lead to catastrophic water shortages, a report authored by the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) has found.
Authored by dozens of international experts from SIWI, the Food and Agriculture Organizations of the United Nations (FAO) and the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), the report outlines how continuing current trends in food production could lead to increased shortage and intense competition for scarce water resources in many regions around the world.
The report found that agriculture, which accounts for around 70 per cent of the world’s fresh water usage, will leverage increasing demand on the world’s water supply as the global population grows by an estimated two billion people by 2050, placing greater pressure on available water and lasnd.
“Feeding everyone well is a primary challenge for this century. Overeating, undernourishment and waste are all on the rise and increased food production may face future constraints from water scarcity,” said report editor Dr. Anders Jägerskog.
“We will need a new recipe to feed the world in the future.”
The report outlines a number of essential and largely overlooked challenges where dedicated action and structured policy can assist in ensuring food security to a growing global population vying for a finite amount of water, including on-farm efficiency improvements, reductions in losses and waste in the food supply chain and enhanced response networks to early warning systems for agricultural emergencies.
The full report is available at www.siwi.org/publications