Crop failure rates in a geoengineered climate: impact of climate change and marine cloud brightening

B Parkes, A Challinor, K Nicklin
2015 Environmental Research Letters  
The impact of geoengineering on crops has to date been studied by examining mean yields. We present the first work focusing on the rate of crop failures under a geoengineered climate. We investigate the impact of a future climate and a potential geoengineering scheme on the number of crop failures in two regions, Northeastern China and West Africa. Climate change associated with a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide increases the number of crop failures in Northeastern China while reducing
more » ... na while reducing the number of crop failures in West Africa. In both regions marine cloud brightening is likely to reduce the number crop failures, although it is more effective at reducing mild crop failure than severe crop failure. We find that water stress, rather than heat stress, is the main cause of crop failure in current, future and geoengineered climates. This demonstrates the importance of irrigation and breeding for tolerance to water stress as adaptation methods in all futures. Analysis of global rainfall under marine cloud brightening has the potential to significantly reduce the impact of climate change on global wheat and groundnut production.
doi:10.1088/1748-9326/10/8/084003 fatcat:66jnkpncjja55cocishrrpi4wq