For the world's poorest and most vulnerable people, 2011 started off bad and only got worse. Food prices in many parts of the world jumped by 19% from September 2010 to September 2011, according to the World Bank food price index, and while global prices didn't quite hit the record highs of 2008 they stayed far above 2010. The Horn of Africa experienced intense droughts which affected an estimated 13 million people; in Somalia alone, a reported 29,000 children have died, a quarter million remain under threat of starvation and half a million refugees have fled to Kenya. Meanwhile, floods in Thailand pushed the price of rice up 25-30%, according to Oxfam. These increased costs aren't just an exercise in economics, or merely an issue for aid workers: rising commodity prices were one of the main factors contributing to the Middle East uprisings of the Arab Spring. Higher costs, many fear, can only lead to more and more dangerous instability.