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Climate analogues suggest limited potential for intensification of production on current croplands under climate change

Pugh, T. A M; Müller, C.; Elliott, J.; Deryng, D.; Folberth, C.; Olin, S. LU ; Schmid, E. and Arneth, A. (2016) In Nature Communications 7.
Abstract

Climate change could pose a major challenge to efforts towards strongly increase food production over the coming decades. However, model simulations of future climate-impacts on crop yields differ substantially in the magnitude and even direction of the projected change. Combining observations of current maximum-attainable yield with climate analogues, we provide a complementary method of assessing the effect of climate change on crop yields. Strong reductions in attainable yields of major cereal crops are found across a large fraction of current cropland by 2050. These areas are vulnerable to climate change and have greatly reduced opportunity for agricultural intensification. However, the total land area, including regions not... (More)

Climate change could pose a major challenge to efforts towards strongly increase food production over the coming decades. However, model simulations of future climate-impacts on crop yields differ substantially in the magnitude and even direction of the projected change. Combining observations of current maximum-attainable yield with climate analogues, we provide a complementary method of assessing the effect of climate change on crop yields. Strong reductions in attainable yields of major cereal crops are found across a large fraction of current cropland by 2050. These areas are vulnerable to climate change and have greatly reduced opportunity for agricultural intensification. However, the total land area, including regions not currently used for crops, climatically suitable for high attainable yields of maize, wheat and rice is similar by 2050 to the present-day. Large shifts in land-use patterns and crop choice will likely be necessary to sustain production growth rates and keep pace with demand.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Nature Communications
volume
7
publisher
Nature Publishing Group
external identifiers
  • scopus:84988591426
  • wos:000385283700001
ISSN
2041-1723
DOI
10.1038/ncomms12608
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
86f482f2-e2f5-4b6c-a83f-0ff4c0c2bd04
date added to LUP
2016-11-02 15:09:47
date last changed
2017-10-22 05:21:21
@article{86f482f2-e2f5-4b6c-a83f-0ff4c0c2bd04,
  abstract     = {<p>Climate change could pose a major challenge to efforts towards strongly increase food production over the coming decades. However, model simulations of future climate-impacts on crop yields differ substantially in the magnitude and even direction of the projected change. Combining observations of current maximum-attainable yield with climate analogues, we provide a complementary method of assessing the effect of climate change on crop yields. Strong reductions in attainable yields of major cereal crops are found across a large fraction of current cropland by 2050. These areas are vulnerable to climate change and have greatly reduced opportunity for agricultural intensification. However, the total land area, including regions not currently used for crops, climatically suitable for high attainable yields of maize, wheat and rice is similar by 2050 to the present-day. Large shifts in land-use patterns and crop choice will likely be necessary to sustain production growth rates and keep pace with demand.</p>},
  articleno    = {12608},
  author       = {Pugh, T. A M and Müller, C. and Elliott, J. and Deryng, D. and Folberth, C. and Olin, S. and Schmid, E. and Arneth, A.},
  issn         = {2041-1723},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {09},
  publisher    = {Nature Publishing Group},
  series       = {Nature Communications},
  title        = {Climate analogues suggest limited potential for intensification of production on current croplands under climate change},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/ncomms12608},
  volume       = {7},
  year         = {2016},
}