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Europe’s crop losses tripled in 50 years

Apr 5, 2021 | News

(05 April 2021) – The severity of crop losses driven by heat waves and drought have tripled in the last fifty years in Europe, according to a study that highlights the vulnerability of food systems to climate change.

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Research published recently in the journal Environmental Research Letters, looked at agricultural production in 28 European countries – the current European Union and United Kingdom – from 1961 to 2018.

They compared this to data on extreme weather events – droughts, heat waves, floods and cold snaps – and found evidence suggesting “climate change is already driving increasing crop losses in observational records”.

While all four became significantly more frequent over the 50-year time period, “the severity of heatwave and drought impacts on crop production roughly tripled”, from losses of 2.2% between 1964 and 1990 to 7.3% from 1991 to 2015. (EurActiv)

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