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NASA climate scientist receives 2022 World Food Prize in Des Moines

Des Moines, IA: - 2022 Laureate Cynthia Rosenzweig and Attendees during Laureate Award Ceremony at the World Food Prize Foundation’s 2022 Norman E. Borlaug International Dialogue Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022, at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines, Iowa. Thursday October 20, 2022. Photo by © World Food Prize/Zach Boyden-Holmes 2022
Zach Boyden-Holmes
World Food Prize
Cynthia Rosenzweig, who received the 2022 World Food Prize, is the 52nd Laureate.

A NASA climate scientist was awarded the World Food Prize in Des Moines Thursday for her work in understanding how climate change affects agriculture and food systems.

Cynthia Rosenzweig, the 2022 World Food Prize Laureate, is a senior research scientist at the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies. She received the World Food Prize during a ceremony at the Iowa State Capitol and used her acceptance speech to highlight an urgency to act against climate change.

“Food systems are emerging at the forefront of climate change action,” Rosenzweig said. “We now know that climate change cannot be restrained without attention to the greenhouse gas emissions coming from food systems.”

Rosenzweig said there is no food security for everyone without a resilience to increasing climate change.

“As we move into this crucial decade of action, of climate change, food needs to be at the table,” she said, adding the World Food Prize has been discussing food a lot at global gatherings.

Rosenzweig is a former farmer. In 2010, she founded a global network of experts in food systems and climate modeling, called AgMIP.

Rosenzweig is the World Food Prize’s 52nd Laureate. The honor comes with a $250,000 prize. Rosenzweig said the money will go to the Columbia Climate School to fund global workshops that work through the challenges of climate change and food.

World Food Prize is a current sponsor of Iowa Public Radio.

Katie Peikes was a reporter for Iowa Public Radio from 2018 to 2023. She joined IPR as its first-ever Western Iowa reporter, and then served as the agricultural reporter.