HOME          CATEGORIES          OUR TAKE

Climate Change Brings on Heat Waves Seriously Impacting Agriculture by City Tech Blogger Isiah Kersaint

Heat Waves and their effect on Agriculture

Heat waves are a state of hot weather when temperatures are more extreme than average targeting an area for two or more consecutive days. Heat waves form high pressure from 10,000–25,000 feet (3,000–7,600 meters)) strengthens and remains over a region for several days up to several weeks. High pressure systems are brought on by the flow of high speed jet streams converging over a specific location and causes air to be forced downward and warmed. The air is prevented from rising from the ground by this high pressure and acts like a dome capping the atmosphere, inhibiting convection, thereby trapping high humidity warm air below it. As a result, we experience heat waves.  Because the air is being forced to the ground clouds cannot form, meaning no rain fall. The impact from this high-pressure system directly affects agriculture by causing droughts. Temperature increases due to climate change causes the jet stream to slow heat waves, keeping them static, resulting in no rain and long droughts.

Our agricultural resources are also under great strain. As of 2017, GISS (NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies) data shows global average temperatures rose 1.62oF, with a steady annual incline. Of the 0.4% of fresh water available to us, the agricultural industry that we depend on for food uses 70% of it to grow crops. With this amount of use, reserves of freshwater all around the world are being drained and places as close as the Colorado River are facing yearly droughts. The agricultural corporations are losing millions of dollars in produced goods because of changing soil quality, infrequent or shifting rain patterns and hostile growing conditions. GrainCorp Ltd, Australia’s largest bulk grain handler, saw its annual underlying net profit fall 50%. The data shows us that at our current mode of operation, our resources are not enough.

Drought in Argentina: Pictured, Argentina before and after a drought throughout the summer of 2018. The drought reduced the global supply of soybeans, one of the primary commodities used for livestock feed. Source: Earth Observatory, NASA (https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/images/91999/a-costly-drought-in-argentina)

Heat waves and elevated mean temperatures are draining prime crop land like the one shown above all over the world, and although it is not seen in modern cities, it will be felt by the increased demand but reduced supply of resources due to decreased crop yield caused by extreme heat conditions

 

Sources:

https://scijinks.gov/heat/

http://mentalfloss.com/article/503501/what-jet-stream-and-how-does-it-work

https://carbonfarmingknowledge.com.au/heat-waves-agriculture/

https://biomarketinsights.com/how-the-global-heatwave-is-harming-agriculture-today-and-creating-problems-for-the-bio-economy-tomorrow

https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/images/91999/a-costly-drought-in-argentina

 

Comment on this article

ClimateYou moderates comments to facilitate an informed, substantive, civil conversation. Abusive, profane, self-promotional, misleading, incoherent or off-topic comments will be rejected. Moderators are staffed during regular business hours (New York time) and can only accept comments written in English.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE


More Posts Like This

CONSEQUENCES

The Silencing of Science by M.Annenberg, ClimateYou Guest Contributor

(Editor’s Note:  This essay is excerpted from Artist/Writer M.Annenberg’s  artist talk about the melting glaciers of the Hindu Kush) American democracy is skating on thin ice, when the potential loss of drinking water for one billion people, because of melting glaciers, is not considered news in the American

CONSEQUENCES

Despite SCOTUS & Manchin, We Can Still Fight Climate Change

Alarm bells went off last month when the Supreme Court’s ruling clamped down on the Environmental Protection Agency’s regulatory authority to control carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions under the Clean Air Act. CO2 emissions are the main source of greenhouse gases causing the earth to overheat, changing the climate

CLIMATEYOU

ClimateYou Founder and Senior Editor George Ropes    1944-2022

George Ropes, founder and longtime senior editor of ClimateYou.org, has passed away after battling a series of illnesses over the last few months. He died peacefully in his Wilmington, Delaware home on Thursday, July 7. He will be sorely missed. George was a prolific contributor to ClimateYou.org, posting

Take action in the fight against climate change