This Week's Herman Trend Alert

After the COVID-19 Pandemic
---Normal 2.0---Part 1


  The Herman Trend Alert

December 11, 2019

Waves in the Jet Stream put Global Food Production at Risk

Once the climate wheels were in motion, it was bound to happen; it is just that no one expected it to occur so soon. In a brand-new study out this week scientists demonstrate how large atmospheric wave patterns greatly increase the chance of more heatwaves in food-producing regions worldwide---more specifically in Northern America, Western Europe, and throughout Asia.

The Risk is Serious
Published in the respected journal Nature Climate Change, this new study ("Amplified Rossby waves enhance risk of concurrent heatwaves in major breadbasket regions") finds that these simultaneous heatwaves will significantly reduce crop production across those regions. In our interconnected world, this reduction will create the risk of multiple harvest failures with numerous far-reaching consequences, including social unrest. Moreover, this situation is likely to lead to spikes in food price and affect food availability even in areas not directly affected by the heatwaves.

Greenhouse Gasses are Fueling this Rise in Temperatures
According to the study's lead author, Dr. Kai Kornhuber from the University of Oxford's Department of Physics and Colombia University's Earth Institute, "Co-occurring heatwaves will become more severe in the coming decades if greenhouse gases are not mitigated." The scientists found a "20-fold increase in the risk of simultaneous heatwaves in major crop-producing regions when these global-scale wind patterns are in place." Up to this point, no one had seen this major vulnerability in the food system because the interconnections had not been quantified.

A Primer on Jet Stream Waves
The Northern Hemisphere's polar jet stream is a fast-moving band of winds coming from the West that navigates the lower layers of the atmosphere. The stream of winds is created by the coming together of cold air from the Arctic and rising warm air from the tropics. The jet stream's wavy appearance is produced when the heavier cold air sinks and pushes warm air regions north, giving the jet stream its wavy appearance. This pattern spreads across the mid-latitudes of North America, Europe, and Asia. Plus from time to time, "fingers" of cold air come down from the Arctic; this condition creates corresponding waves and flows that rush eastward with the rotation of the Earth. The regions that are particularly susceptible to these atmospheric patterns are Western North America, Western Europe, and the Caspian Sea; these regions get heat and drought locked at the same time and crop yields are negatively affected.

The Past Does Not Equal the Future
According to one of the co-authors of the study Dr. Dim Coumou from the Institute for Environmental Studies at VU Amsterdam usually low harvests in one area are offset by good harvests elsewhere. However, these jet stream waves can adversely affect harvests in several important breadbasket regions at the same time, thus creating risks to global food production.

The Trajectory Does Not Look Good for Agriculture
The production of greenhouse gases does not appear to be slowing down, except in rare countries like Costa Rica that are committed to using alternative energy. If the levels continue to rise, there is little doubt that worldwide populations will be affected. It does not matter whether we are in a 5000-year cycle, if heatwaves cause havoc for farmers across the globe. If we know that rising levels of greenhouse gases will cause these major disruptions, we must take action now to prevent them! That said, I am not optimistic that these actions will be taken; I hope I am wrong about this one.

Special thanks to Scitech Daily. To read the entire article, click here.

© Copyright 1998- by The Herman Group, Inc. -- reproduction for publication is encouraged, with the following attribution: From "The Herman Trend Alert," by Joyce Gioia, Strategic Business Futurist. 336-210-3548 or To sign up, visit The Herman Trend Alert is a trademark of The Herman Group, Inc."

Excellent translation services from English, French, or German into Spanish. Especially well-versed in medicine/pharma and automobile industries. 5-year Bachelor Degree in Translation. Also editing and proofreading of all kinds of Spanish language documents. Flexible rates, depending on number of words, degree of difficulty/technicality, and turnaround. For an instant quote email Mariana Campora Lesti at or contact her on SKYPE at marianacampora.

Our author Joyce gets quoted in TIME Magazine and other national media on a regular basis. You can, too! Sign up for You will be found by the news media and in Google search: 1. Through your personal search-engine-optimized press room by 39 topics you choose; 2. By news releases pushed out 10 ways including Google News; 3. Be found in the 2020 printed Yearbook of Experts, Authorities & Spokespersons. Save 15% when you register by September 28th @

No matter how young or old you are, everyone wants to learn and grow. That's why Ingomu is holding its first BeMoreDay to introduce you to their new platform, let you meet many of their coaches, and make a decision for yourself which learning communities you want to join. There are 3 learning tracks: Career Development, Personal Development, and Health and Wellness. Our own author Joyce Gioia is presenting the kick-off program about "Experience Rules for Business." Discover more about this free event and sign up at When you do, you will also have an opportunity (not required) to sign up for your first year of the learning app at a significant discount!

To read this Herman Trend Alert on the web:

Herman Trend Alerts are produced by the Herman Group, strategic business futurists, Certified Management Consultants, authors, and professional speakers.

New subscribers are always welcome. There is no charge for this public service. The Herman Trend Alert is read by over 30,000 people in 90 countries, including other websites and printed periodicals. Click here to sign up for the Herman Trend Alert.

Do you enjoy receiving this weekly e-mail update? Contact us about our co-branded Herman Trend Alert service.

Subscribe or Unsubscribe to weekly Herman Trend Alert
View this week's Herman Trend Alert
Archived Weekly Herman Trend Alerts


[ Home About Products Resources Media ]


7112 Viridian Lane
Austin, TX 78739
Voice: 336-210-3548
Toll Free in US & Canada: 800-227-3566

  © The Herman Group. All rights reserved.

Web site design by WebEditor Design Services, Inc.