Urging our nation's leaders to end hunger

Climate Change and Global Food Security

Viterbo, Italy – For several years now, I've been participating in an annual meeting of environmental communicators from all over the world. The meeting this year, VII International Media Forum on the Protection of Nature, focuses on the theme: Climate is Changing: Stories,  Facts, and People. It is organized by the Italian non-profit, Green Accord.

What makes the conference unusual is that our speakers include people who are being directly affected by climate change – a herder from Mongolia, small farmers from India and Kenya, and an Italian dairy farmer. “The climate change negotiations are really about global food security,” said Janet Larsen, research director of Washington DC's Earth Policy Institute.

Many of my friends will be going to Copenhagen for the UN Conference on Climate Change, December 7-18. Our speakers so far are pessimistic that substantial agreements will be reached during the negotiations. “We will not have a legally-binding agreement, even a politically-binding one,” said Prof. Leena Srivastava, executive director of India's The Energy and Resources Institute.

As we discuss the impacts of climate change on people, it is ironic to note that the latest poll by  Washington Post-ABC News  indicates that fewer Americans believe that global warming is actually happening. This dipped from 80 percent to 72 percent compared to the same period last year. This shift in climate skepticism is especially pronounced among Republicans --only 54 percent now believe global warming is happening, down from 74 percent last year.

The good news is that majority of Americans still believe that the US should cap its carbon emissions even if developing countries like India and China do less.

Adlai Amor is Director of Communications at Bread for the World.


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