World Hunger: No Food Security Possible Without Climate Security


The 3 days world summit on food security started yesterday in Rome. World leaders gathered at the Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) headquarters. A declaration was adopted unanimously pledging to renew international commitment to “eradicate hunger from the face of the earth sustainably and at the earliest date.”

Countries also agreed to work to reverse the decline in domestic and international funding for agriculture and promote new investment in the sector to improve governance of global food issues, and to proactively face the challenges of climate change for food security.

In his address to the FAO summit, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon called the current food crisis a wake-up call for tomorrow.

“There can not be food security without climate security. If the glaciers of the Himalaya melt, it will affect the livelihoods and survival of 300 million people in China, and up to a billion people in Asia. Africa’s small farmers, who produce most of the continent’s food and depend mostly on rain, could see harvests drop by 50 percent by 2020. We must make significant changes to feed ourselves and, most especially, to safeguard the poorest and most vulnerable,” Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon said.

With some sad irony, FAO Director General Jacques Diouf called the over one billion hungry people in the world “our tragic achievement in these modern days”. Diouf stressed the need to produce food where the poor and hungry live.

“The planet can feed itself, provided that the decision made are honored and the required resources are effectively mobilized. Eliminating hunger from the face of the earth requires 44 billion US dollars of official development assistance per year to be invested in infrastructure, technology and modern inputs. It is a small amount if we consider the $ 365 billion of agriculture producer support in OECD countries in 2007, and if we consider the $ 1,340 billion of military expenditures by the world in the same year,” Diouf said.

FAO’s Director General Jacques Diouf makes an excellent point, which hopefully will be picked elsewhere. If the leading world powers, mainly the United States but also China, which currently waste an obscene amount of money and resources on the military and warfare, would put their resources at better use; we could easily end world hunger and may be even save the planet.

According to the FAO, 1 billion people live in chronic hunger worldwide. If you think it is unacceptable and want to help, sign the petition here.


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