Study shows how coffee plants suffer even during short heatwaves
Heatwaves are becoming more common in a world warmed by heat-trapping greenhouse gas pollution, and at some point in the not-too-distant future, that could spell bad news for your morning cup of wake-me-up.
Scientists with Oregon State University’s College of Forestry have showed that, when Coffea arabica plants were subjected to short-duration heat waves, they became unable to produce flowers and fruit. That means no coffee beans, and no coffee to drink.
The study shows that climate change will cut Arabica habitat between 65 and 99 percent, even without factoring in the large-scale deforestation that has occurred in the highland forests of Ethiopia and South Sudan (the natural home of Arabica coffee).
The scientists also identified core habitat areas that could be used as preserves to try and maintain a population of Arabica coffee plants.
Wild Arabica is important to the entire coffee industry as a stock of genetic diversity. The plants are very sensitive to temperature and moisture in very localized microclimates, and coffee harvests have already suffered in recent years, with coffee prices soaring to their highest level in 30 years.
“It’s summer. It’s warm out,” our guitarist said when a member of the production team asked him about the cold and rain. While we hand out flyers for our show at the Festival Fringe during the day the Americans wear jackets and some of the Scottish wear t-shirts. The temperature has been in the 50s and 60s, with a dip down to 48.
Everything is wet. We recently survived 36 straight hours of rain. The Foodies festival was delayed due to muddy conditions. It takes a lot of rain to affect the plans of the Scottish. I love how the city looks in the rain, but it makes our jobs difficult. Our flyers warp and go limp and people are less inclined to stop and listen to us. It makes daily life difficult, too: dishtowels at the flat don’t dry off, the skylight leaks and all my clothes are damp.
Even in the height of the international festival, Edinburgh feels a part of the British Isles. It is a stone city clinging to rock surrounded by green on the edge of the island. The rain and wind come right off the channel. Our cast is staying a block past World’s End Close, a tight alleyway, where the old city, and thus the world, used to end.
Coffee, in all its variations, is done well around the Mediterranean and the Balkans, so it was no surprise to get a delicious dose in a trying-to-be-spiffy coffee shop in the middle of the slightly seedy harbor district in Vlore, Albania.
Not seedy as in dangerous – in fact all of Albania felt as safe as could be – but seedy in the sense of scamming taxi drivers and vendors selling tickets for phantom ferry boats at inflated prices. Our slight brush with this came as we carried our backpacks toward customs. A guy in an official-looking bright orange vest steered toward the maze and then gestured to us that we should put our packs down on a bench while the border guards examined our passports.
He seemed to be suggesting that he would guard them for us while we dealt with the formalities, kind of like those guys with machetes on some tropical beaches who offer to watch your stuff while you swim, with the implication that they’ll steal it if you don’t hire them. Our man in Albania wanted a couple of Euros for his troubles. Continue reading “Travel: The history of croissants”→
SUMMIT COUNTY — I’ve been drinking way too much coffee lately, just one of the perils of running a full-time one-man journalism/blogging shop. Plus I have enablers — loving relatives — who keep sending stashes of primo French dark roasts.
But instead of fighting it, I’ve decided to go with the flow. This is how I like my coffee:
A cool, refreshing summer drink that will save you some money
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — These past few hot days (at least until the monsoons kicked in) we here at Summit Voice headquarters have been cooling off with Φραπέ, our favorite summer drink.
And in case you can’t read the Cyrillic alphabet, that would be a Nescafé frappé, a chillin’ ice coffee drink you can make at home for just pennies per glass. It’s way better than your average half-decaf, caramel, vanilla-bean Frappuccino, and best of all, as you sip it, you can imagine you’re in a street cafe in Athens, watching the world go by.