Long-term study suggests sorghum yields may decline due to global warming

August 15, 2017 by Bob Yirka report
Sorghum field. Credit: Ramasamy Perumal, Sorghum Breeder, Agricultural Research Center, Hays, Kansas.

(Phys.org)—A trio of researchers at Kansas State University has found that sorghum yields begin to drop once a certain average high temperature is reached and continue to drop as temperatures increase. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Jesse Tack, Jane Lingenfelser and S. V. Krishna Jagadish described their study of weather patterns and sorghum yields over the past 30 years and what they found. They also offer some ideas on ways to prevent reductions in crop yields as the planet continues to warm.

Sorghum is a flowering plant in the grass family and is cultivated as a cereal crop—it is eaten by approximately a half-billion people and is considered to be the fifth most important cereal crop in the world today. It is native to Africa, but has made its way to many other parts of the world, including the U.S. The state of Kansas, known for its massive wheat production, is also home to large fields of sorghum. In this new effort, the researchers gathered data from the Kansas Weather Library, which gave them average high and for designated sorghum growing areas along with precipitation levels over the past half-century. They also collected data from the Kansas Grain Sorghum Performance Tests for the years 1985 to 2014, which lists crop yields throughout the state.

The researchers then combined the data from the two sources to learn more about sorghum yields in hotter than normal temperatures. Using statistical analysis, they found that at 33C°, sorghum yields began to decline—each degree of warming showed a certain amount of decline, which the team plotted on a graph. The team was then able to offer an estimate of yield loss for a given amount of warming—if the average temperature during the growing season was 2°C warmer than the critical point, for example, would drop by 17 percent.

The researchers suggest that their findings indicate that plant scientists will need to start looking at ways to make more resistant to increases to prevent losses, or begin advising farmers to start planting farther north.

Sorghum. Credit: Ramasamy Perumal, Sorghum Breeder, Agricultural Research Center, Hays, Kansas.

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Shootist
1.3 / 5 (13) Aug 15, 2017
History students and archaeologists, on the other hand, know that warmer climate is a kinder climate, pointing to the Roman Climate Optimum and the Medieval Climate Optimum, both of which were warmer, for hundreds of years, than the climate of today.
SamB
1 / 5 (11) Aug 15, 2017
History students and archaeologists, on the other hand, know that warmer climate is a kinder climate, pointing to the Roman Climate Optimum and the Medieval Climate Optimum, both of which were warmer, for hundreds of years, than the climate of today.

And they could focus on the positive instead of the negative. Like: "
Long-term study suggests corn yields may increase due to global warming."
Turgent
1 / 5 (11) Aug 15, 2017
Good Science Report

Data source is solid.

Algorithm nor confidence interval provided.

Would like to see temp graph at which sorghum no longer yields

Does not engage in GW porn.

Hope GMO can help avert crisis.
bluesmoke
5 / 5 (11) Aug 15, 2017
You can't grow anything without water regardless of warmer temperatures.
More than half a century of groundwater pumping from the High Plains Aquifer, also known as the Ogallala Aquifer, has led to long segments of rivers drying up.
From 1950 to 2010, we lost 350 miles of streams in this area. Projecting forward to 2060 we expect to lose another 180 miles of streams and small rivers in that region. Most of these wells were drilled in the 1960s to 1980s. This area produces a very large amount of agriculture, a lot of the grain. We estimate the whole Ogallala Aquifer supplies maybe a sixth of the world's grain supply. Even if all the pumping stopped tomorrow it would take about 100 years for the aquifer to refill.
Turgent
1 / 5 (11) Aug 15, 2017
Turgent
1.7 / 5 (11) Aug 15, 2017
The French river in Nebraska is essentially gone.
HeloMenelo
5 / 5 (8) Aug 15, 2017
Not as gone as your reputation here on this site waterprophet, shootist antigoracle sockpuppet TURDgent ;)
dudester
5 / 5 (10) Aug 15, 2017
The Smoky Hill River is gone. As for the comment about the aquifer recharging in 100 years if pumping were to cease immediately, I believe the time interval would be more along the lines of tens of thousands of years. However, a nation committed to the future and to wise resource management as well as the creation of massive numbers of jobs and sustainable industry might engage in a massive program along the lines of the transcontinental railroad/Manhattan Project/Apollo Program/Interstate highway construction and sequester water from the Missouri and Mississippi rivers to pump back into the Ogallala as an irrigation bank for the future.

What many don't realize is that this region has become much more humid over the years as this water has been pumped out and evaporated leading to deceptive quantities of rain across the region that will peter out when the wells run dry. Then truly we will see the Great American Desert-- unless something huge is done first.
rrrander
1 / 5 (4) Aug 22, 2017
People are imbeciles. Streams "dry" up because of re-direction due to development, depletion of water due to usage like irrigation. Climate change has nothing to do with it.
Shootist
1 / 5 (4) Aug 22, 2017
crap crap crap watermelons, Reds on the inside, Greens on the outside

Big data finds the Medieval Warm Period – no denial here
https://www.spect...al-here/

Of course, it was. The watermelons have denied this FACT since Mann's Hockey Stick flat out ignored what was known and understood science. Fraud in the name of science designed to take the wealth from the Western Civilization and spread it to the third world because, reasons.

Barley, wheat and cattle, raised on Greenland for about 400 years during the period 850-1250. Call me when the temps get that warm and stay that warm for 400 years.

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