April 18, 2024

Study Warns: Global Warming to Drive Up Food Prices and Inflation Worldwide


By: Emmanuel Ibitoye


New research conducted by scientists and the European Central Bank reveals that global warming and heatwaves will likely lead to a significant increase in food prices and inflation globally.


Published in the Journal Communications Earth and Environment, the study predicts that the impact of rising temperatures will be felt everywhere, with developing nations particularly vulnerable.


Extreme weather events, including heatwaves, droughts, and floods, are becoming more frequent due to climate change, adversely affecting vital sectors such as agriculture and food production.


Drawing on historical price and weather data from 121 countries between 1996 and 2021, researchers from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and the European Central Bank found that global warming is projected to raise the cost of food worldwide by 1.49 to 1.79 percentage points annually by 2035.


Furthermore, the study indicates that future warming and heat extremes could increase overall inflation by 0.76 to 0.91 percentage points under different scenarios.


Maximilian Kotz, one of the report’s authors from PIK, emphasized the strong correlation between higher temperatures, especially in hot regions, and price increases, particularly in food inflation.


The study highlights that Africa and South America will bear the brunt of these effects, with the northern hemisphere also experiencing higher prices during summer months.


Despite these findings, the research did not find a significant impact of global warming on other household costs, except for electricity prices.

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