Nuclear famine would kill more than 5 billion people

More than 5,000 million people would starve after a full-scale nuclear war between the US and Russia, according to a global study estimating post-conflict crop production.

Building on previous research, Lili Xia and Alan Robock, professors of environmental sciences at Rutgers University, worked to calculate the amount of sunscreen soot that would enter the atmosphere from fire storms that would be ignited by the detonation of nuclear weapons. The results are published in Nature Food.

The researchers calculated the dispersion of soot from six war scenarios (five smaller wars between India and Pakistan and one major war between the US and Russia) depending on the size of each country’s nuclear arsenal.

This data was then entered into the Community Earth System Model, a climate forecasting tool supported by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). NCAR’s Community Land Model made it possible to estimate the productivity of major crops (corn, rice, spring wheat, and soybeans) on a country-by-country basis. The researchers also examined projected changes in livestock grazing and global marine fisheries.

Even in the smallest nuclear scenario, a localized war between India and Pakistan, global average caloric output fell by 7% within five years of the conflict. In the largest war scenario ever tested, a full-scale nuclear conflict between the US and Russia, the world’s average caloric output dropped by about 90% three to four years after the fighting.

Crop Declines would be more severe in mid- and high-latitude nationsincluding major exporting countries like Russia and the US, which could trigger export restrictions and cause serious disruption to import-dependent countries in Africa and the Middle East.

75% of humanity would disappear in two years

These changes would induce a catastrophic disruption of global food markets, the researchers conclude. Even a 7% global decline in crop yields would exceed the largest anomaly ever recorded since the Food and Agriculture Organization’s observational records began in 1961. Under the largest war scenario, more than 75% of the planet would starve within two years.

Read Also:  Argentina Mourns Loss of 5-Year-Old Boy

The researchers considered whether using crops to feed livestock for human food or reducing food waste could offset caloric losses immediately after a war, but the savings were minimal in the large injection scenarios.

"Future work will bring even more granularity to crop models"Xia said in a statement. "For example, the ozone layer would be destroyed by heating of the stratosphere, producing more ultraviolet radiation at the surface, and we need to understand that impact on the food supply."said.

Climatologists at the University of Colorado, who partnered with Rutgers on the study, are also creating detailed soot models for specific cities, like Washington, DC, with inventories of each building to get a more accurate picture of how much smoke is emitted. would occur.

Robock said researchers already have more than enough information to know that a nuclear war of any size would destroy the world’s food systems, killing billions of people in the process.

"If nuclear weapons exist, they can be used, and the world has come close to nuclear war several times."Robock said. "Banning nuclear weapons is the only long-term solution. The UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, five years old, has been ratified by 66 nations, but none of the nine nuclear states. Our work makes it clear that it is time for those nine states to listen to science and the rest of the world and sign this treaty.".

Recent Articles

Related News

Leave A Reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here