ICRISAT and WFP: India Working Paper Effect of Climate Change on Food Stability in the Context of Food Security in India – India
ICRISAT and WFP: India Working Paper Effect of Climate Change ... ReliefWeb
Climate change is a global threat adversely impacting all sectors of the economy and livelihoods, including nutritious food that meets dietary needs (Nema et al., 2012). The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aim to address these challenges and promote sustainable development worldwide. Global climate change refers to the long-term alteration of weather patterns across regions. Scientists agree that human activities, particularly the burning of coal and oil, have significantly contributed to the warming of the earth by increasing heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere (Vijayavenkataraman et al., 2012). The food system, after fossil fuels, is the next major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, accounting for one-third of global anthropogenic emissions (Crippa et al., 2021).
The impacts of global warming and climate change have led to extreme weather events and increased climatic variability, which have adverse effects on multiple sectors, including agriculture, food production, food security, and livelihoods, especially in less developed regions and countries. This poses a significant global challenge with far-reaching impacts on all aspects of human life, particularly food security (Sanober, 2023).
Food Security and Climate Change in India
India, as one of the largest agricultural producers in the world, is highly vulnerable to climate change and its impact on food production systems. Numerous studies have established a relationship between gradual climate change and crop yields, highlighting the challenges faced by policymakers in ensuring food security for the country’s growing population (Aggarwal, 2008; Praveen & Sharma, 2020; Guiteras, 2009; Kumar et al., 2011; Kumar et al., 2004; Mall et al., 2006).
Food security refers to the availability of food and people’s access to it, with the assurance that this access will not diminish in the future. It encompasses physical, environmental, economic, and social dimensions. Food security exists when all people have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food for an active and healthy life (Shaw, 2007). It comprises four dimensions: availability, accessibility, utilization, and stability, which must be fulfilled simultaneously at all levels from national to regional to household level.
The impacts of climate change on the stability of food production in India are likely to have significant consequences. The country already faces high levels of malnutrition and is now threatened by reduced crop yields, soil degradation, and increased vulnerability to pests and diseases. These impacts can lead to food scarcity, increased food prices, and further food insecurity, particularly among vulnerable populations (Godde et al., 2021).
Precipitation patterns also play a crucial role in food production in India. Unpredictable rainfall, droughts, and floods affect water availability for irrigation and crops. Droughts cause crop failures and reduce yields, leading to food scarcity and insecurity. Floods can damage crops, disrupt transportation and food supply chains, and increase the risk of waterborne diseases, exacerbating the challenges faced by farm and food systems in India (Arora, 2019; Datta et al., 2022).
Stability Dimension of Food Security
The stability dimension of food security is critical for ensuring food stability for populations, households, and individuals. Food stability means having access to food at all times without the risk of losing access due to cyclical events, such as the dry season. Lack of food stability can lead to malnutrition and a lack of essential nutrients. While numerous studies have examined the impacts of climate change on food security and its various dimensions, there is limited evidence available on the impact of climate change on food stability at the country level, which is crucial for designing effective food security policies.
This study aims to fill this evidence gap by evaluating the impact of climate change on food stability at the district level in India for various major food crops. By understanding the specific challenges faced by different regions, policymakers can develop targeted strategies to ensure food stability and mitigate the adverse effects of climate change on food security.
SDGs, Targets, and Indicators
SDG 2: Zero Hunger
- Target 2.1: By 2030, end hunger and ensure access by all people, in particular the poor and people in vulnerable situations, including infants, to safe, nutritious, and sufficient food all year round.
- Indicator 2.1.1: Prevalence of undernourishment (PoU) in the population, based on the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) methodology.
SDG 13: Climate Action
- Target 13.1: Strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters in all countries.
- Indicator 13.1.1: Number of deaths, missing persons, and directly affected persons attributed to disasters per 100,000 population.
- Indicator 13.1.2: Proportion of local governments that adopt and implement local disaster risk reduction strategies in line with national disaster risk reduction strategies.
1. SDG 2: Zero Hunger is addressed in the article as it discusses the impact of climate change on food production systems and food security in India. The article highlights the challenges faced by India in ensuring food security for its growing population under changing climate conditions. 2. Target 2.1 under SDG 2 can be identified based on the article’s content. The target aims to end hunger and ensure access to safe, nutritious, and sufficient food for all people, particularly the poor and vulnerable populations. The article emphasizes the importance of food security and access to food in the face of climate change. 3. Indicator 2.1.1 is mentioned in the article as a measure of progress towards achieving Target 2.1. The prevalence of undernourishment in the population, based on the FAO methodology, is an indicator used to assess the extent of hunger and food insecurity. 4. SDG 13: Climate Action is also connected to the issues discussed in the article. The article highlights the impact of climate change on food production, agricultural systems, and food security in India. It emphasizes the need to strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters. 5. Indicator 13.1.1 and Indicator 13.1.2 are mentioned in the article as indicators related to Target 13.1 under SDG 13. These indicators measure the number of deaths, missing persons, and directly affected persons attributed to disasters, as well as the proportion of local governments that adopt and implement local disaster risk reduction strategies.
Table: SDGs, Targets, and Indicators
|SDG 2: Zero Hunger||Target 2.1: By 2030, end hunger and ensure access by all people, in particular the poor and people in vulnerable situations, including infants, to safe, nutritious, and sufficient food all year round.||Indicator 2.1.1: Prevalence of undernourishment (PoU) in the population, based on the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) methodology.|
|SDG 13: Climate Action||Target 13.1: Strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters in all countries.||Indicator 13.1.1: Number of deaths, missing persons, and directly affected persons attributed to disasters per 100,000 population.
Indicator 13.1.2: Proportion of local governments that adopt and implement local disaster risk reduction strategies in line with national disaster risk reduction strategies.
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