MNN Galleries

8 ways climate change can kill you

Sept. 24, 2010, noon
dying corn crop

Photo: Morten Madsen/iStockphoto

4 of 10

Difficulty in food production

As temperatures rise, droughts become more common and destructive storms become more frequent, it will be increasingly more difficult to produce food. In fact, a study by the International Institute for Strategic Studies concluded that 65 countries are likely to lose more than 15 percent of their agricultural output by 2100. Scientists have also predicted that the Southwest and Midwest U.S. could become as arid as the North American dust bowl of the 1930s. But mankind won’t be the only one struggling to live off the land — livestock raised for food will also go hungry.

Warming seas and more acidic waters —caused by the oceans’ absorbtion of carbon dioxide — also make it difficult for fish and other seafood to live. New England lobster numbers are already declining at an alarming rate, and wild pacific salmon have vanished from 40 percent of their traditional Northwestern habitats.