Advertisement

Topics

Millions May Face Protein Deficiency as a Result of Human-Caused Carbon Dioxide Emissions

10:09 EDT 2 Aug 2017 | Meridian Institute

New research from Harvard University, United States, has shown that if carbon dioxide levels continue to rise as projected, the nutritional value of rice, wheat and other staple crops could be affected, resulting in the populations of 18 countries losing more than five percent of their dietary protein by 2050. “This study highlights the need for countries that are most at risk to actively monitor their populations’ nutritional sufficiency, and, more fundamentally, the need for countries to curb human-caused CO2 emissions,” said Samuel Myers, a senior research scientist in the Department of Environmental Health. The research, which was conducted using data from experiments in which crops were exposed to high concentrations of CO2, found that under elevated CO2 concentrations, the protein contents of rice, wheat, barley, and potatoes decreased by 7.6%, 7.8%, 14.1%, and 6.4%, respectively. A companion paper co-authored by Myers found that CO2-related reductions in iron content in staple food crops is likely to exacerbate the already significant problem of iron deficiency worldwide. Overall, said Myers, the studies show that “Strategies to maintain adequate diets need to focus on the most vulnerable countries and populations, and thought must be given to reducing vulnerability to nutrient deficiencies through supporting more diverse and nutritious diets, enriching the nutritional content of staple crops, and breeding crops less sensitive to these CO2 effects. And, of course, we need to dramatically reduce global CO2 emissions as quickly as possible.” The study was published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives. The iron study was published in the journal GeoHealth.

Original Article: Millions May Face Protein Deficiency as a Result of Human-Caused Carbon Dioxide Emissions

NEXT ARTICLE

More From BioPortfolio on "Millions May Face Protein Deficiency as a Result of Human-Caused Carbon Dioxide Emissions"

Quick Search
Advertisement