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Permalink Insect Activity Expected to Rise with Temperatures

Research led by the University of Washington predicts that insect activity in temperate, crop-growing regions will rise along with temperatures. The study, published in Science, found that for each degree Celsius that global mean surface temperatures rise, crop losses for rice, corn, and wheat will increase by 10% to 25%. Experiments show that increases in temperature boost both insect metabolism and reproductive rates. This study's model predicted that a two-degree Celsius rise in global mean surface temperatures would result in median losses in yield of 31% for corn, 19% for rice, and 46% percent for wheat. The research team notes that although modifications could be made in what and where crops are grown and how insects are managed, these efforts would have costs of their own.

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