Billions to Suffer From Thirst and Hungry

Posted on January 30, 2007

The AFP reports that a new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says billions will suffer from lack of water and food by 2080. Water will be in short supply for about 1 to 3 billion people. One imagines that animals -- both livestock and wild animals -- will be suffering as well.

Billions of people will suffer water shortages and the number of hungry will grow by hundreds of millions by 2080 as global temperatures rise, scientists warn in a new report.

The report estimates that between 1.1 billion and 3.2 billion people will be suffering from water scarcity problems by 2080 and between 200 million and 600 million more people will be going hungry.

The assessment is contained in a draft of a major international report by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to be released later this year, Australia's The Age newspaper said.

Rising sea levels could flood seven million more homes, while Australia's famed Great Barrier Reef, treasured as the world's largest living organism, could be dead within decades, the scientists warn, the newspaper said.

The Age said it had obtained a copy of the report, believed to be one of three prepared for release by the IPCC, which is highly regarded for its neutrality and caution.

Australia's beautiful reef will be hard hit according to the IPCC report. There will be annual incidents of bleaching by 2030. The AFP defines bleaching as follows: "Bleaching occurs when the plant-like organisms that make up coral die and leave behind the white limestone skeleton of the reef." Past reports have raised alarms that the oceans are becoming too acidic which will lead to the bleaching of coral reefs.

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