Side Note

Soon we’ll be eating lobster dinners all the time

We already know some of the most documented effects of climate change: The world is getting warmer, natural disasters are becoming deadlier and happening more frequently, and the arctic as we know it may become a thing of the past. But increasing global temperatures are also leading to other, stranger developments, like the fact that we all may be eating a lot more lobster dinners in the near future.



According to a fascinating report Bloomberg dropped today — which measures how climate change is already affecting the way we eat — lobstermen off the coast of Maine are catching more crustaceans than ever. The Gulf of Maine is warming faster than 99.9 percent of the world’s oceans, according to a 2015 study by the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, causing lobsters to procreate like crazy. (Though eventually, ocean temperatures may increase so much that lobster populations actually end up having less sex.) These warmer global temperatures are causing other strange changes to the food supply: cod populations are declining, more squid are roaming the seas, Britain is suddenly warm enough to produce fine wine, and coffee growers in Indonesia, India, and Peru are moving into the mountains.

But climate change’s effects on food extend far beyond the lobster and wine set. As The Outline previously reported, climate change is contributing to famines in other parts of the world, particularly in the Southern Hemisphere, as access to food, water, and other necessary resources becomes limited. And according to a study released earlier this month, South America, Asia, Africa, and the Pacific islands are most vulnerable to climate change-induced drought, which could lead to poor harvests, wildfires, and famine. Even if lobster lovers benefit in the short-run, it’s likely that the negative effects climate change will have on the food supply will outnumber the good ones.