Rome (AFP) Oct 26, 2010
The genetic diversity of the plants that we grow and eat could be lost forever due to climate change, threatening future food security, the UN's Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) said on Tuesday.
Experts from the Rome-based organisation warned that the loss of biodiversity will have a major impact on humankind's ability to feed itself in the future as the global population rises to nine billion by 2050.
"There are thousands of wild crop relatives that... hold genetic secrets that enable them to resist heat, droughts, salinity, floods and pests," FAO director general Jacques Diouf was quoted in the report as saying.
"Increasing the sustainable use of plant diversity could be the main key for addressing risks to genetic resources for agriculture," he said.
The report estimated that 75 percent of crop diversity was lost between 1900 and 2000 and called for "special efforts to conserve and use" both cultivated plants and their "wild" relatives, especially in developing countries.
Fifty percent of the increase in crop yields in recent years has come from new seed varieties, the report said.
FAO experts pointed in particular to the success of New Rice for Africa (NERICA), a cultivator of new types of rice suited to drylands that has transformed local economies in several parts of Africa.
The FAO's second report in 12 years on the state of the world's plant genetic resources covers a range of topics from gene bank collections to the effects of climate change.
The study predicts that as much as 22 percent of the wild relatives of important food crops of peanut, potato and beans will disappear by 2050 because of the changing climate.
The United Nations has named 2010 as the International Year of Biodiversity.
Share This Article With Planet Earth
Farming Today - Suppliers and Technology
Nagoya, Japan (AFP) Oct 26, 2010
Brazil's environment minister warned Tuesday that UN talks on biodiversity hinged on a deal being reached to stop genetic resources and knowledge being plundered in developing countries. Izabella Teixeira said securing a binding pact on ending "biopiracy" was imperative if there was to be a broader treaty at the talks, which are being held in Japan this week, to slow the mass extinction of s ... read more
Italy slaps restrictions on Google's Street View|
TRMM Watches Richard Dump Rain On Belize
China launches own version of Google Earth
Prototype NASA Earth Camera Goes For Test Flight
'Exorbitant' price talk for Galileo maps way off beam: EU
Russia To Launch 8 Glonass Navigation Satellites In 2011-2013
S.Africa implants GPS chips in rhino horns to fight poaching
Rhinos equipped with GPS tracking
New Discoveries Concerning Pre-Columbian Settlements In The Amazon
Brazil mulls land auction to beat logging
Footage shows land clearing threatens Indonesia tigers: WWF
Litter collected, trees planted for global climate campaign
US Navy To Conduct Alternative Fuels Demo With Riverine Command Boat
Boeing Statement Regarding USDA-FAA Partnership On Aviation Biofuels
Carolina pioneering human waste-to-energy
Port Gibson Biomass Plans Taking Shape
Carlisle School District Unveils One Of Pensylvania's Largest Solar Arrays
Solar Frontier And IBM Sign Agreement To Develop CZTS Technology
First Ever US Solar Jobs Census Finds Solar Employment On The Rise
Fluor Develops Master Plan For South Africa Solar Park
Wind power to grow massively until 2030
China's wind power capacity to increase five-fold by 2020
Google in major bid for Eastern US wind power
Findings About Wind Farms Could Expand Their Use
Colombia coal mining gets a timely boost
China mines to beef up safety after Chile rescue: official
China mine death toll hits 31 as anger rises over rescue
Hope fades for trapped miners in China after 26 killed
US, China have 'fundamental disagreement' over Liu: Holder
China activists plan whistleblower site to spur reform
Wary Chinese will complicate huge census effort: official
China VP promoted as party pledges political reform
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2010 - SpaceDaily. AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement|