Satellite data shows how Russia destroyed Ukrainian grain

Nearly 10 million VND Tons of Ukrainian grain were affected by the Russian invasion, according to one new analysis of satellite images. One of Ukraine’s six grain storage facilities – with a total capacity of 58 million tonnes – has been affected by the conflict, either damaged, destroyed or under Russian control.

The Conflict Observatory, which conducted the analysis, found substantial evidence of damage to grain cellars from indiscriminate or targeted bombardment. And as conflict unfolds, concern is being raised about crops to plant now. “If Ukraine doesn’t have enough storage capacity, farmers might not grow crops,” said Nathaniel Raymond, curator of the Humanitarian Research Laboratory and a lecturer at the Yale School of Public Health who led the project. winter wheat. “If they can’t stock up on the upcoming harvest, it’s going to be a availability crisis.”

To get a real sense of the damage done to Ukraine’s grain storage facilities, the Conflict Observatory, in partnership with the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, built a Object detection algorithms can analyze commercial satellite imagery to find previously unidentified bunkers that have suffered sustained damage during the conflict. The team used historical satellite images as well as images of storage facilities known to have suffered persistent damage to train the algorithm to find other facilities that have also been affected. The study focused on specific areas within range of known missile bombardments. From there, the researchers were able to estimate roughly how much grain was destroyed.

Although the researchers weren’t able to analyze every facility — the country has about 1,300 grain cellars, of which 344 were reportedly examined — this is the largest review to date.

“Attempts have been made to estimate the damage to grain storage capacity in Ukraine because of the obvious and present danger to the global food supply,” Raymond said. “The amount of grain that can be stored in the facilities we looked at represents almost a quarter of Ukraine’s grain supply.”

For months after the invasion, Russia grain exports blocked from Ukraine, threatening to create a global food crisis. “For people around the world, war, along with other crises, threatens to unleash unprecedented waves of hunger, leaving economic and social chaos in its wake,” said the United Nations Secretary-General. National António Guterres said in June. At the end of July, Russia agrees to allow certain shipments of 20 million tons grain and other foods are shipped domestically from certain ports of Ukraine. Although global food prices have begun drop in response, Russian President Vladimir Putin since then threatened to close the transaction.

The need for stable grain storage infrastructure in Ukraine is urgent. Grains and other crops often need to be stored under very specific conditions to prevent spoilage. Not at all change in factors As temperature or humidity can significantly cut down on the time it takes for plants to thrive. According to the report, even if the warehouse structure is mostly intact, even minor damage can cause crops to deteriorate.

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