The World’s Supply of Beer Now Threatened by Climate Change

Severe heat and drought could severely impact the world's barley crops and, in effect, its beer.

Alcohol harms
About 25 percent of American adults have been negatively affected by someone else's drinking. (Getty)
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Beer drinkers may soon find themselves hopping mad over a new study that says the Earth’s barley supply could be in serious threat of survival because of climate change.

The research, published Monday by scientists from the United States, China and Britain, predicts the combination of severe heat and drought brought on by climate change to lead to a world-wide beer shortage before the end of the century, The New York Times reported.

It’s enough to drive one to drink: Such conditions could lead to a 20 percent drop in the U.S. and costs of the world’s most popular alcoholic beverage multiplying six or seven times in the Czech Republic.

One of the study’s authors, Dr. Dabo Guan of Tsinghua University in Beijing, told The Times that the premise for the study was conceived in a bar while he and his colleagues brainstormed ways to convey climate change‘s reach to the world. A problematic misconception surrounding the issue, he said, is that global temperature changes will mainly affect the poor.

“We will suffer less,” Guan said. “(Climate change) may not affect our bread, but it will affect our beer.”

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