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Geographic Disparities in Future Global Food Security: Exploring the Impacts of Population Development and Climate Change
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Earth Sciences, Department of Earth Sciences, Natural Resources and Sustainable Development.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Meeting the food demands of a growing population is one of the currently most critical issues for the world community. Additionally, negative impacts of climate change on agriculture are expected in some densely populated regions of developing economies. In this thesis, I examine spatial patterns of future impacts of population development and climate change on food security and how these impacts correlate with current patterns of food security and poverty. I aim to assess the global spatial patterns of food insecurity, concerning the current situation and future prognosis, to quantify the impact of population development and climate change on food security, and to examine to what extent poverty can explain spatial patterns.

To identify spatial patterns, I performed a multiple correlation analysis. The aggregated impact estimate of population development and climate change was calculated by adding their respective national predictions. The explanatory power of poverty was evaluated using regression models which contained population development  predictions and current food security as functions of poverty rate. Based on the my results and a literature review I discuss the future geographic disparities of food security and the corresponding consequences for combating hunger.

My results show that global geographic disparities are likely to increase substantially, mainly because population, and in turn food demand, will increase strongly in sub-Saharan Africa, the region with the highest decline of resources in relation to population. Impacts of climate change show a similar geographic pattern where foodinsecure regions will be affected the most. I found that poverty is a significant explanatory variable for both population growth and food security. The literature review support causality between variables, which places poverty at the core of food security issues. Poverty causes both a barrier to access food markets and population growth,which ultimately decrease food availability. In order to reach zero hunger for the coming generations, there is an urgent need to redistribute resources, change direction in agriculture practices and implement extensive political measures that carefully consider both local and global contexts.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. , p. 68
Series
UPTEC STS, ISSN 1650-8319 ; 17001
Keyword [en]
spatial correlations, planetary boundaries, demography, hunger, agriculture, crop productivity
Keyword [sv]
rumsliga korrelationer, planetära gränser, demografi, hunger, klimatförändringar, befolkningsutveckling, jordbruk
National Category
Physical Geography Human Geography Probability Theory and Statistics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-314012OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-314012DiVA, id: diva2:1068700
External cooperation
Institute of Physical Geography, University of Freiburg
Educational program
Systems in Technology and Society Programme
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2017-01-27 Created: 2017-01-27 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved

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Natural Resources and Sustainable Development
Physical GeographyHuman GeographyProbability Theory and Statistics

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