Areas of Low Climatic Risk
To ensure coffee farming is viable in a given region, the scientific community has established metrics for judging whether a region will be an area of low climatic risk now and in the future. The following paragraph describes the climatic conditions suitable for arabica coffee production:
Annual average temperature between 18° C and 22° C, annual water deficit less than 100 mm [meaning evaporation rates only exceed precipitation rates by a maximum of 100 mm per annum] and frost probability (risk of lowest annual temperature less than 1° C) less than 25%. An area is said to have “low climatic risks” for coffee production when these three climatic conditions are met. (J. Zullo Jr. et al., 2011)
Using GCM and RCP technology, scientists can predict what regions might not be climate-compatible for farming arabica coffee in the future. Using this technology C. Bunn et al., (2014) project a 49% loss of climate-compatible land by 2050 for the arabica species. Figures 2.2 and 2.3 (below) from their research show the findings of one RCP projection.
Source: C. Bunn et al., 2014
This chart summarises the findings of three separate RCP models (C. Bunn et al., 2014).The percentages refer to the projected losses of climate compatible land in each coffee region by 2050, compared relative to the amount of land under arabica cultivation at the time of the research in 2014.