Background Paper: International context and current thinking on 4Fs


One of the biggest challenges of the 21st Century is how to meet the needs of a growing human population and growing development pressures with the resources of a single planet. Key projections from influential models and reports forecast:
• 0.9 billion people are currently under-­‐nourished
• Global population will surpass 9 billion by 2050;
• Food supplies must expand 100 per cent by 2050;
• Food systems contribute 19-­‐29% of global anthropogenic GHG emissions, including the indirect effects on land cover change
• Climate change will reduce crop yields in many countries
• Beyond 2030, food, fibre and fuel production will compete intensively for limited land and water resources;
• Demand for wood and fibre products will continue to increase;
• Developing 100% renewable energy will require bio-­‐energy production from an additional 250 million ha of crop and tree plantations by 2050, in addition to 4.5 billion m3 of wood;
• Global warming can be kept below 2°C through strategies including reduced emissions from forestry and agriculture; the costs and investment needed are fairly low, but implementation will be challenging.