Saturday, May 13, 2017

Coffee’s Fate Is Getting Jittery as Climate Change Puts Growing Areas at Risk

A century ago, Puerto Rico was a coffee-growing powerhouse that sent its finest beans across the Atlantic to satisfy the demands of the European market. Since then, the Caribbean island's role in the global market has dimmed, but coffee remains an iconic product, recently boosted by a small resurgence in coffee cultivation.
As pests and rising temperatures push prime growing regions
toward cooler climates, the coffee industry's drive to meet
demand could encroach on tropical forests and fuel deforestation. 

Now, growers hope the island will make an artisanal comeback—but they first have to figure out how to keep their coffee plants thriving as the planet heats up around them.
Along with other countries in the "bean belt"—the latitudes between the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn where coffee thrives in the mild climate—Puerto Rico is projected to get hotter and drier with climate change. Under current warming trajectories, growing beans on the coffee-proud island could be impossible in as little as 50 years, according to a new study.
Read Georgina Guston’s story on Inside Climate News - “Coffee’s Fate Is Getting Jittery as Climate Change Puts Growing Areas at Risk.”

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