22 April 2008

Environment: U.N. Expert Calls Food Crisis "a silent tsunami"

CNN reports that a U.N. expert calls the current global food crisis "a silent tsunami."

"Those battling global warming by promoting biofuels may unintentionally be adding to skyrocketing world food prices, creating what one expert calls 'a silent tsunami' in developing nations.

"Josette Sheeran, the U.N. World Food Program executive director, illustrates the food ration for children.

"The rising prices are 'threatening to plunge more than 100 million people on every continent into hunger,' Josette Sheeran, executive director of the United Nations' World Food Program, said on the agency's Web site Tuesday.

"Sheeran is one of the experts attending a Food summit hosted Tuesday by British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, aimed at determining ways to boost food supplies and identify deterrents. Also attending the meeting are scientists and representatives from the European Union and Africa.

"On the Web site, Sheeran said the increase in food prices is 'a silent tsunami that respects no borders.'

"'The world's misery index is rising ... as soaring food and fuel prices roll through the lives of the most vulnerable,' she said Friday.

"The crisis is forcing the organization to look for cuts in aid to some of its recipients, she said.

"Soaring food prices have triggered violence in some developing countries, and biofuels are bearing at least part of the blame."

Read the full article: Food Crisis

Read the Economist cover story on the issue: Silent Tsunami