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Agriculture and Climate Change. Eugene S. Takle Agronomy Department Geological and Atmospheric Science Department Iowa State University Ames, Iowa 50011 [email protected] Underwriting/Marketing Seminar, 30 March 2005. Outline. Evidence for global climate change

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Agriculture and climate change

Agriculture and Climate Change

Eugene S. Takle

Agronomy Department

Geological and Atmospheric Science Department

Iowa State University

Ames, Iowa 50011

[email protected]

Underwriting/Marketing Seminar, 30 March 2005


Outline
Outline

  • Evidence for global climate change

  • Future atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations

  • Simulations of global climate and future climate change

  • Impacts of climate change for the US Midwest

  • “Climate surprises”

  • Social inequities and ethical issues

    surrounding climate change

  • Summary


Carbon dioxide and temperature
Carbon Dioxide and Temperature


Carbon dioxide and temperature1
Carbon Dioxide and Temperature

2005


Carbon dioxide and temperature2

2040

Carbon Dioxide and Temperature

(440 ppm)

2005

(375 ppm)


Carbon dioxide and temperature3
Carbon Dioxide and Temperature

Stabilization at 550 ppm


Carbon dioxide and temperature4
Carbon Dioxide and Temperature

“Business as Usual”

(fossil intensive)

2100


Associated climate changes
Associated Climate Changes

  • Global sea-level has increased 1-2 mm/yr

  • Duration of ice cover of rivers and lakes decreased by 2 weeks in N. Hemisphere

  • Arctic ice has thinned substantially, decreased in extent by 10-15%

  • Reduced permafrost in polar, sub-polar, mountainous regions

  • Growing season lengthened by 1-4 days in N. Hemisphere

  • Retreat of continental glaciers on all continents

  • Poleward shift of animal and plant ranges

  • Snow cover decreased by 10%

  • Earlier flowering dates

  • Coral reef bleaching

Source: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 2001 Report


Mann, M. E., R. S. Bailey, and M. K. Hughes, 1999: Geophysical Research Letters 26, 759.


El Chichon (1982) Geophysical Research Letters 26, 759.

Agung, 1963

Mt. Pinatubo (1991)

Hansen, Scientific American, March 2004




The planet is committed to Research

a warming over the next

50 years regardless of

political decisions

Source: National Center for Atmospheric Research



40% Probability Report

5% Probability

Source: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 2001 Report


Climate Change Report

Projected for 2100

Rapid Economic

Growth

Slower Economic

Growth


Source: IPCC, 2001: ReportClimate Change 2001: The Scientific Basis


Source: IPCC, 2001: ReportClimate Change 2001: The Scientific Basis


Ipcc summary for policy makers
IPCC Summary for ReportPolicy Makers

  • An increasing body of observations gives a collective picture of a warming world and other changes in the climate system


Ipcc summary for policy makers1
IPCC Summary for ReportPolicy Makers

  • An increasing body of observations gives a collective picture of a warming world and other changes in the climate system

  • Emissions of greenhouse gases and aerosols due to human activities continue to alter the atmosphere in ways that are expected to affect the climate


Ipcc summary for policy makers cont d
IPCC Summary for ReportPolicy Makers, cont’d

  • Confidence in the ability of models to project future climate has increased


Ipcc summary for policy makers cont d1
IPCC Summary for ReportPolicy Makers, cont’d

  • Confidence in the ability of models to project future climate has increased

  • There is new and stronger evidence that most of the warming observed over the last 50 years is attributable to human activities


Ipcc summary for policy makers cont d2
IPCC Summary for ReportPolicy Makers, cont’d

  • Anthropogenic climate change will persist for many centuries


Ipcc summary for policy makers cont d3
IPCC Summary for ReportPolicy Makers, cont’d

  • Anthropogenic climate change will persist for many centuries

  • Further action is required to address remaining gaps in information and understanding


Climate surprises low probability but high impact events
Climate Surprises: ReportLow Probability but High-Impact Events

  • Breakdown of the ocean thermohaline circulation (Greenland melt water)

  • Breakoff of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet


Antarctica Report

Greenland

Ice Volume

0

Warm

Cold

Climate


Meltwater flows into Report

a large moulin on

Greenland and down to

the bedrock to "lubricate"

the sheet

BBC News: World Edition

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/2558319.stm


For the midwest
For the Midwest Report

  • Warming will be greater for winter than summer

  • Warming will be greater at night than during the day

  • A 3oF rise in summer daytime temperature triples the probability of a heat wave

  • Growing season will be longer (8-9 days longer now than in 1950)

  • More precipitation

  • Likely more soil moisture in summer

  • More rain will come in intense rainfall events

  • Higher stream flow, more flooding


Sub-Basins of the Report

Upper Mississippi

River Basin

119 sub-basins

Outflow measured

at Grafton, IL

Approximately one

observing station

per sub-basin

Approximately one

model grid point

per sub-basin


RegCM2 Simulation Domain Report

Red = global model grid point

Green/blue = regional model grid points


Ten-Year Mean Monthly Stream Flow Generated by the Report

RegCM2 Regional Climate Model Driven

with HadCM2 Global Model Results for the

Contemporary and Future Scenario (2040s) Climate


Relation of Runoff to Precipitation Report

for Various Climates

More precip goes to streamflow in a future climate


Warming hole
“Warming Hole” Report

˚C

DTmax (JJA)


Source: IPCC, 2001: ReportClimate Change 2001: The Scientific Basis


Social inequities due to climate change
Social Inequities due to Climate Change Report

  • Agricultural production

  • Freshwater availability

  • Sea-water innundation

  • Intergenerational equities


Social inequities due to climate change1
Social Inequities due to Climate Change Report

  • Agricultural production

  • Freshwater availability

  • Sea-water innundation

  • Intergenerational equities


Impact on us agriculture my speculations
Impact on US Agriculture Report(my speculations)

  • The US is a large enough country at a high enough latitude that it will have regional winners and losers

  • Areas now marginal for agriculture may become less suitable

  • Some areas now having abundant water but limited growing seasons may be winners

  • Areas with good soils and robust climate, like Iowa, may be impacted less

  • The US Midwest may experience more variability from

    year to year, which would make agricultural yields

    more variable (flooding, water-logging, drought)

  • Changes in consumption and agricultural production

    in other nations may affect US agriculture more

    than changes to US climate

  • Environmental refugees?


Social inequities due to climate change2
Social Inequities due to Climate Change Report

  • Agricultural production

  • Freshwater availability

  • Sea-water innundation

  • Intergenerational equities




Social inequities due to climate change3
Social Inequities due to Climate Change Report

  • Agricultural production

  • Freshwater availability

  • Sea-water innundation

  • Intergenerational equities


Sea water innundation example the maldives
Sea-Water Innundation ReportExample: The Maldives

  • Area: 115 square miles

  • Population: 143,000

  • Highest point: 20 ft above sea level


Social inequities due to climate change4
Social Inequities due to Climate Change Report

  • Agricultural production

  • Freshwater availability

  • Sea-water innundation

  • Intergenerational inequities


Intergenerational inequities
Intergenerational Inequities Report

  • Sustainable Development: “To meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.”

  • Energy sources?

  • Non-renewable earth resources?

  • Agricultural productivity?

  • Fresh water supplies?

  • Heavy metal contamination of soil

    and water?


Summary
Summary Report

  • Climate change is real and we need to be doing something about it

  • The longer we wait, the fewer our options

  • Regional patterns of warming will be complicated

  • Climate surprises can’t be discounted

  • Climate change will create regional

    agricultural winners and losers

  • Climate change carries ethical

    implications


For more information
For More Information Report

  • See my online Global Change course:

    http://www.meteor.iastate.edu/gccourse

  • Contact me directly:

    [email protected]

    http://www.meteor.iastate.edu/faculty/takle/


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