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Italy without pasta ?

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In a report released by the British Meteorological Office on Monday, scientists warned that climate change may soon make it impossible for Italy to grow durum wheat for pasta.

The report is the result of research undertaken as part of the EU-funded Ensembles Project, a five-year study of the impact of climate change on lifestyles and eating habits in Europe. The Project has been led by the Met Office.

The report predicts that increasing temperatures and decreasing rainfall will cause a decline in Italy’s durum wheat crops from 2020 and that these will disappear in the second half of this century. Italy’s southerly location means that it is particularly susceptible to rising temperatures.

Italy already imports 40% of the grain it uses for pasta, mostly from Canada and formerly from Syria, which imposed an embargo on grain exports in 2007. Global warming and the use of durum as a bio-fuel are the main causes of a worldwide shortage of durum wheat. A 20% rise in pasta prices prompted protests all over Italy in 2007.

The Director of Ensembles, Paul van der Linden, has told The Sunday Times that many other crops could suffer a similar fate as Europe becomes hotter and drier: France may be unable to produce Champagne, Poland may not be able to grow potatoes and Spain faces possible desertification.

What do you think Italy can do about this situation?

Source: www.italymag.co.uk.com

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