Saturday, March 05, 2016

Working for the Future

It is becoming increasingly apparent that food and agriculture across the world is in crisis. Last year saw the leaders of the world come together in Paris for the summit on climate change, where, various proposals were agreed upon to cut down on each country's respective carbon footprint. However, the effects of climate change are not just limited to the melting of glaciers. They reach out far and wide and even affect food production. Climate change is an ever-growing concern in the world. Melting glaciers and ice sheets, rising pollution levels, deforestation, etc., all contribute or are reflective of the very fact that global warming and/or climate change is, after all, very much real.

Climate change could kill half a million people globally, and more than a hundred thousand in India over the next 35 years. China will see even more deaths than India because of changes in agriculture and food consumption with the climate-related deaths expected to be 248,000.

A future without climate change in which increases in food availability and consumption could have prevented 1.9 million deaths. But the socialist case goes so much further and attributes hunger to the economic social system we live under. A minority of the global population has access to so much food than it can afford to waste much of it, while food poverty and inequality have become a fact of life for hundreds of millions. Agriculture and food production and distribution have become globalised and tied to an international system of trade based on export-oriented mono-cropping, commodity production for the international market.

One of the most popular terms used today to describe food production is “stewardship”.  However, that term is more than a buzzword. It is all about that important goal to strive daily to help feed and clothe nearly 7.4 billion people worldwide through the careful, sustainable use of water, land, air and other resources. Only a socialist society can guarantee such a world.