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Unformatted text preview: s/pbcs.dll/article?AI D=/20080518/FEATURES05/805180310/1014/FEATURES05) Once again the world's food situation is bleak. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the price of wheat is more than 80 percent higher than a year ago, and corn prices are up by 25 percent. Global cereal stocks have fallen to their lowest level since 1982. Prices have gone so high that the United Nations World Food Program, which aims to feed 73 million people this year, reported it might have to reduce rations or the number of people it will help. Food riots are happening in many countries and threaten to bring down some countries as starving people demand better from their government. However, this time the problem will not be so easy to solve. There are some 75 million more people to feed each year! Consumption of meat and other high-quality foods — mainly in China and India — has boosted demand for grain for animal feed. Poor harvests due to bad weather in this country and elsewhere have contributed. High energy prices are adding to the pressures as some arable land is converted from growing food crops to biofuel crops and making it more expensive to ship the food that is produced. According to Lester Brown, president of the World Policy Institute, "This troubling situation is unlike any the world has faced before. The challenge is not simply to deal with a temporary rise in grain prices, as in the past, but rather to quickly alter those trends whose cumulative effects collectively threaten the food security that is a hallmark of civilization. If food security cannot be restored quickly, social unrest and political instability will spread and the number of failing states will likely increase dramatically, threatening the very stability of civilization itself." 17 | P a g e Inland Waterways Affirmative BDL Answers to: No Impact to Food Shocks [___] [___] Food spikes ensure global starvation and instability Joachim Braun, Center for Development Research, 2010 (August 18, “Food insecurity, hunger and malnutrition: necessary policy and technology changes”, At their peaks in the second quarter of 2008, world prices of wheat and maize were three times higher than at the beginning of 2003, and the price of rice was five times higher. In response to high food prices, poor households had to limit their food consumption, shift to even less-balanced diets, and spend less on other goods and services that are essential for their health and welfare, such as clean water, sanitation, education and health care [7]. Food price hikes have also worsened micronutrient deficiencies, with negative consequences for people's nutrition and health, such as impaired cognitive development, lower resistance to disease and increased risks during childbirth for both mothers and children. Since children's nutrition is crucial for their physical and cognitive development and for their productivity and earnings as adults, the health and economic consequences of insufficient food and poor diets are lifelong – for the individuals as well as for society. A 2008 Lancet article shows that men who...
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This document was uploaded on 02/06/2014.

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