Tonight a billion people will go to bed hungry and that number may get worse.

Between now and 2050, the world’s population will rise by nearly a third, while the demand for agricultural goods will rise by 70 percent and the demand for meat will double. These increases will have to happen without farmers clearing large amounts of new land or using up lots more water and all the while dealing with the consequences of climate change which will do more harm than good to farmland around the world.

The February 2014 Camden Conference — The Global Politics of Food and Water — will zero in on this crisis.

In preparation for the February event, the Camden Conference is launching a free discussion series to be held at Midcoast libraries.

The first session, The Coming Food Crisis: How to Feed the World by 2050, will be held at the Camden Public Library on Tuesday, Sept. 17, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Rather like a book group, but requiring less preparation, each conversation will focus on one of six different aspects of the global food and water situation.

The Camden Conference Discussion Series will promote thoughtful, engaged dialogue based on a list of articles and videos — some essential, others optional — led by a facilitator from the local community. Please visit for a complete reading list. Alternatively, a reading copy of the essential articles will be available at the library circulation desk.

The 27th Annual Camden Conference will be held Feb. 21-23, 2014. For more information, visit, email, or call 236-1034.