Food Security Current Affairs

World Food Prize 2018 awarded to Lawrence Haddad and Dr. David Nabarro

The World Food Prize 2018 was awarded to Lawrence Haddad and Dr. David Nabarro for their individual but complementary global leadership in elevating maternal and child undernutrition within food security. The World Food Prize is most prominent global award for individuals whose breakthrough achievements alleviate hunger and promote global food security. This year’s $250,000 prize will be divided equally between two recipients.

Key Facts

Lawrence Haddad is British economist and food policy researcher and Dr. David Nabarro has worked with the World Health Organization (WHO) and United Nations (UN) on health and hunger issues. Both have dedicated their careers to reducing hunger and malnutrition. Their work has deepened understanding of nutrition’s impact on individual health and also on human capital and economic growth – compelling world leaders to invest in evidence-based solutions. Their work has resulted in reducing world’s number of stunted children by 10 million between 2012 and 2017.

World Food Prize

The prize recognizes achievements of individuals who have advanced human development by improving the quality, quantity, or availability of food in the world. It was conceived in 1986 by Nobel laureate Norman Borlaug (considered as father of the Green Revolution).

The prize is annual award carrying monetary award of $250,000. The prize emphasizes importance of a nutritious and sustainable food supply for all people and is considered as means of establishing role models who would inspire others.

Since its formation, 7 Indians have won it. They are Dr Sanjaya Rajaram (2014), Dr Modadugu Vijay Gupta (2005), Dr Surinder K. Vasal (2000), Dr B. R. Barwale (1998), Dr Gurdev Khush (1996), Dr Verghese Kurien (1989) and Prof. M. S. Swaminathan (1987, he was first recipient of the prize).

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India at risk of food shortage due to climate change: Study    

According to recently published global study, India is among countries which are at greatest risk of food insecurity due to weather extremes caused by climate change. The study had examined how climate change could affect vulnerability of different countries mainly 122 developing and least-developed countries (mostly in Asia, Africa and South America) to food insecurity — when people lack access to sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food. It examined projected changes in weather extremes and their implications for freshwater availability and vulnerability to food insecurity.

Key Findings

Climate change caused by 2 degrees Celsius global warming is expected to lead to more extremes of both heavy rainfall and drought, with different effects in different parts of world. Such weather extremes will increase vulnerability to food insecurity. The countries at greatest vulnerability to food insecurity due to climate change are Oman, India, Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia and Brazil.

Global warming is expected to lead to wetter conditions on average causing floods and putting food production at risk. But agriculture may also get harmed by more frequent and prolonged droughts in some areas caused by climate change.

Wetter conditions are expected to have biggest impact in South and East Asia, with most extreme projections suggesting flow of River Ganges could more than double at 2 degrees Celsius global warming. Some areas are projected to see increase in flood event lengths of 4 days or more, particularly India and Bangladesh, for which such increases are projected in all ensemble members to some extent.

The areas worst affected by droughts are expected to be southern Africa and South America – where flows in Amazon River are projected to decline by up to 25%. Some climatic change is already unavoidable, but if global warming is limited to 1.5 degrees Celsius, this vulnerability is projected to remain smaller approximately 76% of developing countries than at 2 degrees Celsius

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