Bohol is under a state of calamity defined by thousands of hectares of farmlands and crops being destroyed by El Niño while the World Food Day is observed today.

The challenge of climate change to agriculture and food security has gotten more serious—a cause of action with urgency by everybody, said Rep. Edgar Chatto, chairman of the Committee on Climate Change of the House of Representatives.

Bohol’s running total farm losses to the dry spell already reached P259 million and are still counting. Affected farm workers could be as many as 100,000.

The already-evident and further-anticipated process of anthropogenic climate change raises worldwide concerns regarding agricultural production, food security, and public health.

The four pillars of food security — its availability, accessibility, utilization, and stability — will all be affected by the more expected changes in climate.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has determined that global food prices will likely increase by the year 2050 as a result of changes in temperature and precipitation

Farmers are struggling to adapt to changing growing seasons and rainfall levels, and need significant support to feed an expanding population – demand for food is due to nearly double by 2050.

The tricky bit, however, is that agriculture is in part responsible for climate change.

This is highlighted by a World Economic Forum (WEF) report, which shows that the industry is responsible for up to 30% of global greenhouse gas emissions.

Add to this poor farming practices that have damaged soil
fertility, killed off plant and animal species and polluted water supplies, and a complicated picture emerges.

The link between climate change and food security is a two-way street.

The industry must adapt to reduce emissions and ensure sustainability, but also grow to feed an increasing global population.

Nearly a billion people are hungry today, and with yields set to drop 20% in some areas as a result of climate change, action is urgently needed, according to the WEF.