By Emily YoffeOctober 14, 2018 13:07:10Climate change has been blamed for more than 30 million crop losses and nearly 1 million deaths since it was first reported in the early 1900s, a new report says.
The report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office says the impact is still “likely substantial.”
The report, released Wednesday, comes as President Donald Trump has made fighting climate change a top priority.
The GAO said that climate change has already forced millions of people out of their homes, driven down the price of crops, led to a dramatic drop in water quality, and reduced agricultural production.
“Climate change is one of the most pervasive threats to food security, livelihoods, and communities,” said GAO Chair Sen. Tom Carper, a Democrat from Delaware.
“The United States will have to work with all of our partners, including agriculture, to mitigate the consequences of climate change.”
The GAOs report, called Climate and Agriculture: Challenges and Opportunities, is based on the latest available data on climate change impacts and is a draft.
It’s a follow-up to a 2016 GAO report called Climate Impacts on Agriculture, which used a similar methodology.
The 2016 GAOs study found that crop losses were at the highest levels in history and that the United States is already experiencing a decline in food security.
The new report said that if we do not reduce carbon emissions, the United State could lose nearly one billion hectares of cropland in 2050 alone, which could cause $8 billion in lost crop production.