Climate change ruins everything — and now it’s coming for your tea
Have you ever noticed that climate change is ruining everything you love? It seems like every week a new study reveals untold threats to another one of our favorite things. Beer? Drink up while you still can. Wine? It’s getting weirder, not to mention greasier. Coffee? Might want to start cutting back now. If drinks are out, how about a nice walk in the woods? Uh, sure — you have fun being devoured by ticks.
Whatever you’re into — sportsball events, fresh guac, priceless historical sites, steamers, Venice, ice, any of these animals — I’m afraid I have bad news on all counts. And I really, really, REALLY hope you weren’t that into chocolate.
Welcome, friends, to Spoiler Alerts — your source for the latest (heart)breaking climate news. There may be no use crying over spilt milk chocolate, but at least we can cry about it together.
This week, we’re all about to get thirstier, as climate change levels its sights on the world’s second-most popular beverage: tea (water is first, duh). I may live in a coffee town, but in my secret British heart I always yearn for tea time — and now that time is running out. Here’s the story from Quartz:
Early research indicates that tea growing regions could decline in some parts of the world by up to 40-55% in the coming decades and the qualities, particularly for high-end teas, could also change.
Planting a tea bush is a decades-long investment—one not easily moved or replaced. That means, to prepare for future changes, farmers and companies need to act—if not now, then soon—if the tea in your mug is going to be there in the future.
And it’s not just the availability of tea that’s in danger — it’s the flavor, too:
In a preview of what’s to come, recent wet monsoon conditions led to a 50% increase in the quantity of tea produced, but a 50% decrease in some of the compounds that give Yunnan teas their distinct flavor, in essence diluting the tea.
You can read the rest of the story here, but I recommend taking it with a stiff upper lip and a nice, hot cuppa … while you still can.