Study: Climate Change, Air Pollution Will Lead To Famine By 2050

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A group of scientists warn that warmer temperatures and an increase in air pollution could kill off many crops by mid-century. (John Moore/Getty Images)

A group of scientists warn that warmer temperatures and an increase in air pollution could kill off many crops by mid-century. (John Moore/Getty Images)

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (CBS Connecticut) – The effects of global warming combined with an increase in air pollution is a recipe for worldwide famine, warns a new study.

MIT researchers looked at the interactions between increasing temperatures and ozone pollution, and found that they can be quite significant, reports.

Especially because ozone is known to damage crops.

The study looked at the global production of four leading food crops: rice, wheat, corn and soy. Those products account for over half of the calories consumed by humans around the world.

Wheat is very sensitive to ozone while corn is more susceptible to heat. Warming may reduce global crop yields by about 10 percent by 2050.

That means, say the researchers, that policy-makers need to come up with flexible responses to the changes expected in the global climate.

The study is published in the journal Nature Climate Change.

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