`NASA Climate Scientist Wins World Food Prize - Olive Oil Times

NASA Climate Scientist Wins World Food Prize

By Paolo DeAndreis
May. 9, 2022 14:11 UTC

Research about the impacts of cli­mate change on agri­cul­ture began more than 30 years ago due to the pio­neer­ing work of a few sci­en­tists.

Among them is Cynthia Rosenzweig, who was just named the 2022 World Food Prize lau­re­ate for her research on mod­el­ing the impact of cli­mate change on global food pro­duc­tion.

Her lead­er­ship of AgMIP has directly helped deci­sion-mak­ers in more than 90 coun­tries enhance their resilience to cli­mate change.- World Food Prize Foundation, 

She was rec­og­nized for lead­ing the global sci­en­tific col­lab­o­ra­tion that pro­duced the method­ol­ogy and data used by deci­sion-mak­ers around the world,” said the World Food Prize Foundation.

The ongo­ing global debate on cli­mate change is highly focused on food sys­tems and their impact on the envi­ron­ment and food safety.

See Also:Climate Coverage

Rosenzweig founded a glob­ally inte­grated trans-dis­ci­pli­nary net­work of cli­mate and food sys­tem mod­el­ers known as the Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Project (AgMIP).

AgMIP is a com­mu­nity of experts devoted to find­ing inno­v­a­tive meth­ods to pre­dict future per­for­mance of agri­cul­tural and food sys­tems, study­ing how they inte­grate with global and regional sce­nar­ios and how they react to cli­mate change.

AgMIP’s work is behind many high-pro­file research papers that inform the global debate about cli­mate change and its con­se­quences.

Thanks to the Rosenzweig-founded hub, more than a thou­sand sci­en­tists, agri­cul­tural com­pa­nies and pol­i­cy­mak­ers research the con­nec­tions between farm­ing, land use, nutri­tion, shocks and other related top­ics.

Her lead­er­ship of AgMIP has directly helped deci­sion-mak­ers in more than 90 coun­tries enhance their resilience to cli­mate change,” the foun­da­tion wrote.

According to Rosenzweig, one of the biggest chal­lenges today is the accel­er­a­tion of extreme weather events due to cli­mate change, which are man­i­fest­ing them­selves years ear­lier than expected.


Cynthia Rosenzweig (Photo: Barnard College)

Extreme events have started to become more severe, longer dura­tion, more fre­quent, ear­lier, I think, than we had antic­i­pated,” she told United States-based National Public Radio. Starting around the turn into the 2000s, this increase in extreme events in agri­cul­tural regions around the world.”

Given their expo­sure to extreme weather events and chang­ing rain­fall pat­terns, Rosenzweig said AgMIP is actively coop­er­at­ing with devel­op­ing coun­tries to iden­tify strate­gies for adap­ta­tion.

See Also:Flash Droughts Are Happening More Quickly and Lasting Longer, Study Finds

If the pat­tern of rain­fall is chang­ing, let’s develop and evolve the agri­cul­tural sys­tems to have plant­ing dates when the rain is occur­ring,” she said. We’re look­ing at heat and drought-tol­er­ant crops to rec­om­mend.”

In her first inter­view after being named 2022 lau­re­ate by the foun­da­tion, Rosenzweig empha­sized how cru­cial the par­tic­i­pa­tion of all stake­hold­ers for local adap­ta­tion to cli­mate change is to the def­i­n­i­tion of effi­cient strate­gies.

We have a project now in Bangladesh to look at sus­tain­able rice pro­duc­tion,” she said. Participants at the stake­holder engage­ment meet­ing asked us to include live­stock as well as rice pro­duc­tion in the pro­to­cols.”

So we are devel­op­ing live­stock mod­el­ing for green­house gas emis­sions and cli­mate impacts for the next phase of the project,” she added.

Formerly the coor­di­na­tor of sev­eral regional and national U.S. cli­mate-related ini­tia­tives, Rosenzweig is now head of the Climate Impacts Group at the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies.

She is also a pro­fes­sor at Barnard College and a senior research sci­en­tist at the Earth Institute at Columbia University. Based in New York City, Rosenzweig also chairs or co-chairs four other local and national orga­ni­za­tions ded­i­cated to cli­mate change action and research.

Rosenzweig has long been involved in cli­mate action. In 2012, she was named one of Nature’s 10: Ten People Who Mattered in 2012” and received the Guggenheim Fellowship for her work on cli­mate mod­els.

Rosenzweig has also announced that the whole $250,000 (€236,000) prize assigned by the Foundation will go into sup­port­ing research on cli­mate change and food.


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