A new study at the University of Exeter reveals that climate change has
raised the risk of Black Sigatoka, a fungal disease that ravages banana
The study, which combined experimental data on Black Sigatoka infections
over the past 60 years says changes to moisture and temperature conditions
have increased the risk of Black Sigatoka by more than 44% in Latin America
and the Caribbean since the 1960s.
"Black Sigatoka is caused by a fungus (Pseudocercospora fijiensis) whose
life cycle is strongly determined by weather and microclimate," said Dr.
Daniel Bebber, of the University of Exeter. He added that climate change has
made temperatures better for spore germination and growth, and made crop
canopies wetter, raising the risk of Black Sigatoka infection in many
banana-growing areas of Latin America.