Climate change, land use change, and China's food security in the twenty-first century: An integrated perspective

Fulu Tao*, Masayuki Yokozawa, Jiyuan Liu, Zhao Zhang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


Food security in China, the world's most populous country, has long been a concern because of the challenges of population growth, water shortages, and loss of cropland through urbanization, soil degradation, and climate change. Here, we present an integrated analysis of China's food demand and supply under IPCC Special Report on Emissions Scenarios A1, A2, B1, and B2 in 2020, 2050, and 2080, based on official statistics and future development scenarios. Our analysis accounts for future socioeconomic, technological, and resource developments, as well the impact of climate change. We present a covariant relationship between changes in cereal productivity due to climate change and the cereal harvest area required to satisfy China's food demand. We also estimated the effects of changing harvested areas on the productivity required to satisfy the food demand; of productivity changes due to climate change on the harvest area required to satisfy food demand; and of productivity and land use changes on the population at risk of undernutrition. China could be able to feed herself without disturbing the global food market in the twenty-first century, but whether the government will choose self-sufficiency or increased food imports may depend on the cost of change, which remains unknown.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-445
Number of pages13
JournalClimatic Change
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Apr
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Atmospheric Science


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