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Journal Article

Dietary changes could compensate for potential yield reductions upon global river flow protection

Authors
/persons/resource/Johanna.Braun

Braun,  Johanna
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;

/persons/resource/stenzel

Stenzel,  Fabian
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;

/persons/resource/Bodirsky

Bodirsky,  Benjamin Leon
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;

Jalava,  Mika
External Organizations;

/persons/resource/Dieter.Gerten

Gerten,  Dieter
Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research;

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Citation

Braun, J., Stenzel, F., Bodirsky, B. L., Jalava, M., Gerten, D. (2022 online): Dietary changes could compensate for potential yield reductions upon global river flow protection. - Global Sustainability.
https://doi.org/10.1017/sus.2022.12


Cite as: https://publications.pik-potsdam.de/pubman/item/item_27276
Abstract
Globally, freshwater systems are degrading due to excessive water withdrawals. We estimate that if rivers’ environmental flow requirements were protected, the associated decrease in irrigation water availability would reduce global yields by ~5%. As one option to increase food supply within limited water resources, we show that dietary changes towards less livestock products could compensate for this effect. If all currently grown edible feed was directly consumed by humans, we estimate that global food supply would even increase by 19%. We thus provide evidence that dietary changes are an important strategy to harmonize river flow protection with sustained food supply.