The cost of offsetting projected crop yield losses

Tuesday, June 30th, 2020

Investments in agricultural research and development (R&D) will be critical for offsetting the negative impacts of climate change on the global food system. Professor Tomas Hertel (Agricultural Economics) and co-authors sought to quantify the cost required to make such an investment effective. They concluded that increased R&D adaptation investments of between $187 billion and $1,384 billion between 2020 and 2040 would be necessary to counter the projected crop yield losses due to climate change. They noted that while this cost is 16-118% higher than current spending trends, such an investment would offer considerable benefits in terms of economic returns, food security, and environmental sustainability.

Baldos, U.L.C., Fugle, K.O., and T.W. Hertel (2020). The research cost of adapting agriculture to climate change: A global analysis to 2050. Agricultural Economics 51:201-220. DOI: 10.1111/agec.12550

Category: Research
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