A new study by researchers at Ohio State University claims existing research shows climate change will cause increased food scarcity and violence and their new study reveals the best way to stop these “food riots” is to have strong, “capable governments” to ensure stability. However, despite these dire warnings, numerous studies and reports show warmer temperatures aren’t nearly as dangerous as so many seem to believe.
According to Ohio State professor and study co-author Bear Braumoeller, “We’ve already started to see climate change as an issue that won’t just put the coasts under water, but as something that could cause food riots in some parts of the world.”
“Climate-induced food scarcity is going to become an increasingly big issue and we wanted to understand which countries are most threatened by it,” Braumoeller said in a press release about the study.
Braumoeller and his co-authors sought to determine which countries would be most vulnerable to food-scarcity-related uprisings caused by climate change by examining violent uprisings in Africa from 1991 to 2011.
“We found that the most vulnerable countries are those that have weak political institutions, are relatively poor and rely more on agriculture,” Braumoeller said.
There’s nothing groundbreaking about saying there’s less likely to be uprisings of any kind when more-stable governments are present, but the narrative Braumoeller and his team is perpetuating through their study — that climate change is causing significant social unrest — is one that is being repeated with greater frequency by leading proponents of the theory humans are primarily responsible for causing global warming. If humans don’t stop producing carbon-dioxide emissions in significant amounts, they argue, the world will burst into chaos because of warmer temperatures.
Such a claim might help alarmists’ political agenda and researchers to obtain more funds, but it’s simply not supported by science.
For starters, Earth’s climate is never perfectly stable. In one part of the world or another, there are always going to be food shortages, political unrest, and problems related to agriculture. In the United States, long before the presence of “global warming,” Americans faced significant hardship in large part because of the severe droughts of the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, a major contributor to the Great Depression.
Alarmists would counter by saying these problems are more likely to occur with a warmer climate, but research shows the presence of additional carbon dioxide has actually led to better plant growth and crop yields throughout much of the world, including in Africa.
In April, The Blaze reported a study published in the journal Nature showed “the sum of all plant photosynthesis on Earth grew by 30 percent” during the 19th and 20th centuries, periods of significant warming, with the “leading candidates” of the increased plant growth being “rising atmospheric CO2 levels, a result of emissions from human activities; longer growing seasons, a result of climate change caused by CO2 emissions; and nitrogen pollution, another result of fossil fuel combustion and agriculture.”
“The rising CO2 level stimulates crops yields,” said lead researcher of the Nature study Elliott Campbell, a professor at the University of California at Merced.
In May, leading climate researcher Patrick Michaels, director of the Center for the Study of Science at the Cato Institute, wrote in an article he hypothesizes the reason one recent study showed substantial amounts of forest cover in global drylands had gone uncounted in previous studies on the subject is because significant growth has occurred in recent years due to higher amounts of carbon dioxide.
Further, a 2016 study by researcher Zaichan Zhu and 31 coauthors revealed — based on “a remarkable analysis of global vegetation change since satellite sensors became operational in the late 1970s” — that the “vast majority of the globe’s vegetated area shows greening, with 25-50% of that area showing a statistically significant change, while only 4% of the vegetated area is significantly browning,” according to Michaels.
All this research and more suggests the opposite of what the Ohio State researchers argued in their study: Rather than cause significant problems, a warmer global climate appears to be causing significant greening, better plant growth, and stronger crop yields, all of which should be good news for people concerned about food riots.
(H/T: Watts Up With That?)