As Extreme Weather Batters Farm Country, Banks Ignore Climate Risks

"The effects on agriculture of more frequent and intense natural disasters could overwhelm lenders, destabilize the food supply and disrupt the global economy."

"Since the early 1980s, Dale Murden has grown citrus in the tip of southern Texas, where the Rio Grande winds through a sun-baked floodplain across the border into Mexico.

Murden cruises his groves in a John Deere Gator, often accompanied by Blue and Blanca—his “wonder rescue” dogs, as he calls them—past trees he planted years ago. They are just old grapefruit trees, but over the last year they have become battle-tested companions.

They’ve put up a “heckuva fight,” he says.

Last summer, Murden watched as the trees struggled against a massive drought that withered leaves and fruits. Then a hurricane drove thousands of grapefruits to the ground, where they bobbed, unripe and green, in giant muddy puddles. After a freak deep freeze in February, Murden found drifts of nearly-ripe fruit laying useless on the ground, under canopies of browned leaves and frost-split branches."

Georgina Gustin reports for Inside Climate News May 2, 2021.

Source: Inside Climate News, 05/03/2021