The water footprint of staple crop trade under climate and policy scenarios

Megan Konar, Jeffrey J. Reimer, Zekarias Hussein, Naota Hanasaki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Trade in staple crop commodities has become increasingly important in the global food system, with ramifications for both food security and water resources sustainability. It is thus essential to understand how the water footprint (WF) of staple crop trade may change in the future. To this end, we project international staple crop trade and its WF under climate and policy scenarios for the year 2030. We use the H08 global hydrologic model to determine the impact of climatic changes to staple crop yields and evapotranspiration. Using the yield changes projected with the H08 model, we estimate the bilateral trade of staple crops using the Global Trade Analysis Project model. We combine these projections to obtain the total and blue WF of agricultural trade and global water savings (GWS) across scenarios. This approach enables us to determine the direct impact of climate change and trade liberalization - together and in isolation - on the WF of staple crop trade. Importantly, we show that trade liberalization leads to greater WF, making it a potentially important adaptation measure to a changing climate, although future work is needed to distinguish high resolution crop water use, water stress, and commodity transfers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number035006
JournalEnvironmental Research Letters
Volume11
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 26 2016

Fingerprint

water footprint
crop
Climate
Water
Crops
climate
trade liberalization
commodity
climate change
agricultural trade
global trade
food security
water stress
crop yield
water use
evapotranspiration
savings
water resource
sustainability
food

Keywords

  • adaptation
  • agricultural trade
  • climate change
  • global water savings
  • trade policy
  • virtual water
  • water footprint

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this

The water footprint of staple crop trade under climate and policy scenarios. / Konar, Megan; Reimer, Jeffrey J.; Hussein, Zekarias; Hanasaki, Naota.

In: Environmental Research Letters, Vol. 11, No. 3, 035006, 26.02.2016.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Konar, Megan; Reimer, Jeffrey J.; Hussein, Zekarias; Hanasaki, Naota / The water footprint of staple crop trade under climate and policy scenarios.

In: Environmental Research Letters, Vol. 11, No. 3, 035006, 26.02.2016.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{d935add02d114221af99e8fe11ab7fd1,
title = "The water footprint of staple crop trade under climate and policy scenarios",
abstract = "Trade in staple crop commodities has become increasingly important in the global food system, with ramifications for both food security and water resources sustainability. It is thus essential to understand how the water footprint (WF) of staple crop trade may change in the future. To this end, we project international staple crop trade and its WF under climate and policy scenarios for the year 2030. We use the H08 global hydrologic model to determine the impact of climatic changes to staple crop yields and evapotranspiration. Using the yield changes projected with the H08 model, we estimate the bilateral trade of staple crops using the Global Trade Analysis Project model. We combine these projections to obtain the total and blue WF of agricultural trade and global water savings (GWS) across scenarios. This approach enables us to determine the direct impact of climate change and trade liberalization - together and in isolation - on the WF of staple crop trade. Importantly, we show that trade liberalization leads to greater WF, making it a potentially important adaptation measure to a changing climate, although future work is needed to distinguish high resolution crop water use, water stress, and commodity transfers.",
keywords = "adaptation, agricultural trade, climate change, global water savings, trade policy, virtual water, water footprint",
author = "Megan Konar and Reimer, {Jeffrey J.} and Zekarias Hussein and Naota Hanasaki",
year = "2016",
month = "2",
doi = "10.1088/1748-9326/11/3/035006",
volume = "11",
journal = "Environmental Research Letters",
issn = "1748-9326",
publisher = "IOP Publishing Ltd.",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The water footprint of staple crop trade under climate and policy scenarios

AU - Konar,Megan

AU - Reimer,Jeffrey J.

AU - Hussein,Zekarias

AU - Hanasaki,Naota

PY - 2016/2/26

Y1 - 2016/2/26

N2 - Trade in staple crop commodities has become increasingly important in the global food system, with ramifications for both food security and water resources sustainability. It is thus essential to understand how the water footprint (WF) of staple crop trade may change in the future. To this end, we project international staple crop trade and its WF under climate and policy scenarios for the year 2030. We use the H08 global hydrologic model to determine the impact of climatic changes to staple crop yields and evapotranspiration. Using the yield changes projected with the H08 model, we estimate the bilateral trade of staple crops using the Global Trade Analysis Project model. We combine these projections to obtain the total and blue WF of agricultural trade and global water savings (GWS) across scenarios. This approach enables us to determine the direct impact of climate change and trade liberalization - together and in isolation - on the WF of staple crop trade. Importantly, we show that trade liberalization leads to greater WF, making it a potentially important adaptation measure to a changing climate, although future work is needed to distinguish high resolution crop water use, water stress, and commodity transfers.

AB - Trade in staple crop commodities has become increasingly important in the global food system, with ramifications for both food security and water resources sustainability. It is thus essential to understand how the water footprint (WF) of staple crop trade may change in the future. To this end, we project international staple crop trade and its WF under climate and policy scenarios for the year 2030. We use the H08 global hydrologic model to determine the impact of climatic changes to staple crop yields and evapotranspiration. Using the yield changes projected with the H08 model, we estimate the bilateral trade of staple crops using the Global Trade Analysis Project model. We combine these projections to obtain the total and blue WF of agricultural trade and global water savings (GWS) across scenarios. This approach enables us to determine the direct impact of climate change and trade liberalization - together and in isolation - on the WF of staple crop trade. Importantly, we show that trade liberalization leads to greater WF, making it a potentially important adaptation measure to a changing climate, although future work is needed to distinguish high resolution crop water use, water stress, and commodity transfers.

KW - adaptation

KW - agricultural trade

KW - climate change

KW - global water savings

KW - trade policy

KW - virtual water

KW - water footprint

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84961967579&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84961967579&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1088/1748-9326/11/3/035006

DO - 10.1088/1748-9326/11/3/035006

M3 - Article

VL - 11

JO - Environmental Research Letters

T2 - Environmental Research Letters

JF - Environmental Research Letters

SN - 1748-9326

IS - 3

M1 - 035006

ER -