Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Global warming and last year´s grain harvest in Russia - new facts

Flashback: Putin announces ban on grain exports in August 2010

Last year world media were full of reports linking the Russian summer heatwave and the reduced grain harvest to global warming:

Since summer, signs of severe food insecurity — droughts, food riots, five- to tenfold increases in produce costs — have erupted around the globe. Several new reports now argue that regionally catastrophic crop failures — largely due to heat stressare signals that global warming may have begun outpacing the ability of farmers to adapt.

Read the entire article here

Government officials are pointing to the drought and wildfires in Russia, and the floods across Central and East Asia as consistent with climate change predictions. While climatologists say that a single weather event cannot be linked directly to a warming planet, patterns of worsening storms, severer droughts, and disasters brought on by extreme weather are expected as the planet warms.

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has put a ban on grain exports from Russian in order to keep prices low domestically until 2011. Putin's announcement aggravated fears of a global food crisis as wheat prices have almost doubled since June.

On Thursday, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev told a Russian Security Council meeting, "Everyone is talking about climate change now. Unfortunately, what is happening now in our central regions is evidence of this global climate change, because we have never in our history faced such weather conditions in the past. This means that we need to change the way we work, change the methods that we used in the past."

Read the entire article here

Now it turns out that the reports about the sharply reduced grain harvest were exaggerated:

Russia grain losses exaggerated by up to 6m tonnes

 Farmers and officials in Russia may have exaggerated drought losses of grains last year by up to 6m tonnes to cash in on compensation packages, implying the country may have more of the crops to export than had been thought.
Some growers who reported their crop has a wipeout to claim from disaster relief funds in fact achieved some harvest, even if only of 0.2-0.3 tonnes per hectare, US Department of Agriculture attaches in Moscow said.
"Analysts point out that reliable, unbiased data on grain production is still absent in Russia," the attaches said in a report.
The under-reporting may have resulted in the actual harvest being some 3m-6m tonnes higher than the official estimate of 61m tonnes.
Read the entire article here
This piece of news will almost certainly not get any attention in the alarmist mainstream media, because it does not fit into their global warming gloom scenario.

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