Climate Connections: Crazy About Coffee

Photo

“Peace of mind in a cup” — it’s what some of us want in our much-needed morning cup of coffee, but in a warmer climate it’s likely to come with an increased price tag.

Listen to today’s Climate Connection

Jonas Bishop heads to his local coffee shop every morning for what he calls…

BISHOP: “Peace of mind… in a cup”

Nearly 60% of Americans say they need coffee to start their day. But the price of our morning Joe is on the rise, due to stresses on the coffee bean supply after a recent drought in Brazil, extreme rains in Vietnam, and rust fungus in Central America.

BISHOP: “Makes sense. Totally. Makes me wanna do a little more research on it.”

And that’s exactly what the coffee industry and scientists are doing. Elsa Morano is a researcher at Texas A&M:

MORANO: “If we don’t do anything about climate change, the price of coffee is going to continue to go up.”

A warmer climate will force coffee growers to move uphill to cooler areas. So Morano and her team are breeding coffee plants with greater resistance to heat and mold. They’re also training farmers how to adapt.

MORANO: “So it’s a holistic approach.”

As for Bishop, he might change his coffee approach too.

Bishop: “I’m pretty broke as it is and I probably shouldn’t be coming here every morning to spend three dollars on coffee.”

If prices continue to rise, that morning cup may no longer provide peace of mind. I’m Anthony Leiserowitz.

Climate Connections is produced by the Yale Center for Environmental Communication. Learn more at www.YaleClimateConnections.org.

Reporting credits: Julia Kumari Drapkin and ChavoBart Digital Media.
Photo: Copyright protected.

More Resources
The Norman Borlaug Institute for International Agriculture information (Texas A&M University System)
World Coffee Research (Texas A&M)
Harvard School of Public Health
Fungus stoked by warming threatens organic coffee

Home > Climate Connections > Podcast

Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.