A fungus called rust has picked off coffee trees in Central America for the last 6 years, making scientists think the area could soon lose 40% of its crops. Now, climate change is also threatening the global coffee supply by helping the fungus spread even quicker, National Geographic reports. As weather patterns change and more rain falls, rust jumps from tree to tree more easily, covering leaves with brown splotches that inhibit photosynthesis and lead to the plants’ death. Scientists suggest that one solution is to create genetically engineered coffee trees that can withstand the fatal fungus.
Read our COVID-19 research and news.