Just waking up? If so, this is definitely not the story you want to read first thing today. (Also, what are you doing just waking up now? It’s Thursday — were you out partying on a Wednesday night? You might have a problem.)
Now for the bad news: if scientists are right, we’re all going to experience a lot of rough mornings in the future. A team of researchers has revealed that they’ve identified a particular strain of coffee, Arabica, that’s expected to go extinct due to climate change. By the year 2080, it could be completely wiped off the planet by rising temperatures (Arabica grows best between 64 F and 70 F). The findings were published in the peer-reviewed journal Plos One.
In the interest of clarity, not all coffee is going extinct; it’s just this one strain of coffee. There’s no need to start rioting and hoarding beans — yet. This particular strain does make up the vast majority of the coffee we drink, though, so we’ll have to radically alter how we produce coffee if we want to keep drinking it beyond 2080. At the very least, the price of a cup of Joe is likely to rise well beyond the already ridiculous levels found in Starbucks.
To try to stave off extinction of the Arabica strain, scientists have been migrating coffee crops to higher grounds (LOL, grounds) for years. If we don’t stop global warming, however, there will come a time when it doesn’t matter what altitude coffee crops are planted.
The more important story here (if anything can be more important than coffee) is that, if this one strain of coffee is at risk due to global warming, it’s probably not a great sign for the rest of the world’s food supply. Then again, if we all lose our primary source of caffeine, our collective mood will probably be so bad that it won’t really matter whether or not we have food.