Guest “Gizmodo must be Latin for ‘dumb as a shoe’” by David Middleton

EARTHER
EXTREME WEATHER
The U.S. Wheat Crop Is in Trouble
Spring wheat could see some of its lowest wheat yields in decades due to widespread drought and heat.

Molly Taft
Yesterday 12:10PM

Wheat farmers across the country are facing lower yields as 98% of the country’s wheat crop is in areas experiencing drought.

In the Northern Plains, the Department of Agriculture said Monday that farmers were projected to harvest their smallest crop of spring wheat—crops planted in the spring and harvested in the autumn—in 33 years. 

[…]

The Pacific Northwest saw ground temperatures rise to 145 degrees Fahrenheit (63 degrees Celsius) during the heat wave worsened by climate change earlier this month, with the worst readings in the parts of Washington and Oregon where wheat is grown.

[…]

This summer’s wheat woes are a look into how crop yields may start to sputter more regularly, even as agriculture makes technological advancements. Ortiz-Bobea coauthored a study published in Nature Climate Change earlier this year that found that climate change has already made global farming productivity 21% lower than it could have been—the equivalent of making no improvements in productivity for seven years.

[…]

“This is going to become more frequent,” he said. “Climate change is already slowing down productivity at a global scale. It’s already happening but we don’t see it because this is a bad year compared to the previous one. We’re comparing today versus yesterday because we’re not thinking about what could have been.

Molly Taft

Writing about climate change, renewable energy, and Big Oil/Big Gas/Big Everything for Earther. Formerly of the Center for Public Integrity & Nexus Media News. I’m very tall & have a very short dog.

Gizmodo

US Wheat Production has actually been declining since 1981… Largely due to the fact that world wheat production has skyrocketed, reducing demand for US exports.

Wheat data in plots including 2021 are mid-year numbers.

US Wheat Production Peaked in 1981 (Peak Wheat)

Figure 1. US Wheat: Harvested acreage, yield and production (USDA).

US Wheat Exports Peaked in 1981 (Peak Exports)

Figure 2. US Wheat: Production, exports and year-ending stocks (USDA).

World Wheat Production Has Nearly Doubled Since 1981

Figure 3. World and US wheat production (USDA).

Wheat Appears to Like Warmer Weather

Figure 4. World wheat production likes global warming (USDA and Wood For Trees). Yes… I managed to misspell “weather” in the chart title… I’ll fix it tomorrow morning when I get back to the office.

Wheat Appears to Like Plant Food

Figure 5. Wheat + Plant Food = More Wheat (USDA & Wood For Trees)

If Not For Climate Change…

This summer’s wheat woes are a look into how crop yields may start to sputter more regularly, even as agriculture makes technological advancements. Ortiz-Bobea coauthored a study published in Nature Climate Change earlier this year that found that climate change has already made global farming productivity 21% lower than it could have been—the equivalent of making no improvements in productivity for seven years.

Gizmodo
Figure 6. “Climate change has already made global farming productivity 21% lower than it could have been…”Really? (Our World in Data)

Mr. Data Likes to Laugh at Gizmodo and Earther Articles

David Middleton

Writing about climate change, reliable energy, Gizmodo articles and geology for Watts Up With That? Currently part the Climate Wrecking Industry. I’m fairly short & we have 10 very short dogs... Although the Corgis think they are legless German Shepherds.

via Watts Up With That?

https://ift.tt/3z0s2QK

July 14, 2021