Abstract for: The GLU Model - Can we feed the world and survive it?

The GLU Model explores the potentials for biotic resources - food/non-food, material/energetic - using a system dynamics model and data from the FAO. It looks at the land use for forests, extensive or intensive agriculture, and for infrastructure, the development of the population and its plant and animal based diet, the waste of food and the use of both wood and non-wood biomass for materials and energy generation. The GLU Model also looks at the relative impacts of the global land use on greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. The simulations indicate that the current trajectories even without the assumption of major yield losses as a result from climate change would not allow us to further feed the world. Unless the world takes concerted action the logic would be a continued deforestation. However, a combination of moderate changes in diet, food waste, energetic use of biomass, and the utilization of extensively used land would allow for afforestation substituting steel and concrete with an end of life energetic use of biotic materials for a significant contribution to tackling climate change as would the shift towards organic farming that, too, would help to capture carbon from the atmosphere plus its additional benefits for biodiversity and resilience.