Sunday, January 23, 2011

Food Riots Becoming Common

Riots have broken out across the world over high food prices. This year, prices for food have reached an all-time high since 1990. In Tunisia and Algeria, hundreds have been injured while some have even been killed due to uprisings over the unjust price of food. Countries that have yet to experience demonstrations have been stocking up on groceries in efforts to keep their citizens calm.

Climate change is one of many causes explaining the recent excessive food prices. Across the planet, weather has been unpredictable and damaging to crops. Farming often provides less available food than anticipated and costs therefore increase.

For example, crops in Pakistan suffered from massive flooding, and Russian crops were hit by record heat in 2010. In Laos and Cambodia, unpredictable rainfall foiled many crops.  Climate change experts predict that this sort of unreliable weather will only become more common in the future as global warming accelerates.

As a result of unruly weather, cereal prices rose nearly fifty percent, and meat and sugar costs have been at their highest in the past twenty years. In efforts to address the prices, Nicholas Sarkozy, France’s President and the new Chairman of the G20, has put the issue on this week’s G20 economic reform agenda in Washington, D.C.

"The reality is that the same speculators that caused the global economic meltdown through their illustrious trade in sub-prime mortgages, are betting on our food system now too," says Deborah Doane, from the World Development Movement. Speculators play a big role in this situation as they have been pouring investment dollars into indexes of food prices, causing much talk over the subject.

source: Fishlink Sublegals

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