The SOMM Journal

June / July 2015

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{ }  91 within which they can growth, survive and propagate. As global temperatures increase, we should also see a shift in the range where different pests and insects can grow and thrive. For example, the glassy-winged sharpshooter is an invasive pest to California and harbors Pierce's disease, a disease of the grape- vine that is known to cause significant economic losses to those vineyards where it has attacked. Some climate change models with a warming of 2 o C to 3 o C predict the distribution and severity of the glassy-winged sharpshooter to increase, potentially invad- ing significantly more vineyards and agricultural fields in California and locations further north such as Oregon and Washington as temperatures increase even more. Oak Wood Quality One often overlooked indirect effect of climate change on the global wine industry relates to the quality of the wood used for barrel aging, a technique often used in higher quality wines. Increased CO 2 levels in the atmosphere as a result of global climate change has been shown to increase the growth rate of various trees, including those oak trees used in quality wine-barrel production. One study found that this increased growth rate in oak trees results in the size and number of the vessels (aka hollow areas) uti- lized by the tree to transport water and other nutrients through- out the plant, thus potentially leaving the wood more susceptible to breakage and damage during and after barrel production. Another study found that increased CO 2 levels resulted in decreased ellagitannins in the oak wood, thus reducing the levels of these oak tannins imparted into wine aged in barrels made from this wood, ultimately changing the sensory characteristics of the finished wine and potentially reducing quality. Future Directions Depending upon the location, climate change will likely affect grape growing and winemaking somewhat differently. While understanding physiological changes of grapes in a changing cli- mate is relatively easy, figuring out how to adjust to these changes may be more complicated. In addition to the chemistry and science behind it, wine has a human element, which may or may not be amenable to necessary adjustments required due to climate change. The flexibility and adaptability of the "human factor" will be key in the successes or failures of a given region. Putting aside old traditions and identities will be critical in a given wine region's ability to stay alive in this rapidly changing global climate. Understanding the effect of climate change at the local level will be significant for those wine regions looking to stay afloat. How is the temperature predicted to change in the region? What sort of grapes can grow in the predicted future climate for that region? In addition to simply planting new known varieties, research and development of new varieties that can potentially withstand higher temperatures, wild weather events, pest invasion or any other direct or indirect effect of climate change will be critical for those regions teetering on the edge of "sweet spot" zone for grape growing. Marketing of a highly diverse portfolio of grape and wine styles will be of utmost importance in helping to increase consumer demand for these new wines, thus alleviating some of the pressure of having to maintain certain traditions or personas and allowing a wine region to thrive under any climate change circumstance. Finally, we need to come to grips that the wine industry as we know it is going to change whether we like it or not. How much it changes depends on what we invest in now in order to address these issues. There will still be amazing high-quality wines in the future. Where they come from and what grapes they will be made from is the big unknown. Will they come from Bordeaux or Tuscany? Or will we see fine wines emerging from places like British Columbia or Idaho? We have to continue to embrace chance, diversity and differ- ent varieties of wine grapes, and accept the fact that change is necessary. Selected References Diffenbaugh, N. S., White, M. A., Jones, G. V., and Ashfaq, M. 2011. Climate adaptation wedges: a case study of premium wine in the Western United States. Environmental Research Letters 6: 024024. (Western U.S.) Gutierrez, A. P., Ponti, L., Hoddle, M., Almeida, R. P. P., and Irvin, N. A. 2011. Geographic distribution and relative abundance of the invasive Glassy- Winged Sharpshooter : Effects of Temperature and Egg Parasitoids. Environmental Entomology 40(4): 755–769. (California) Holland, T. and Smit, B. 2010. Climate Change and the Wine Industry: Current Research Themes and New Directions. Journal of Wine Research 21(2–3): 125-136. (Global) Jones, G. V. 2006. Climate and Terroir : Impacts of Climate Variability and Change on Wine. In Fine Wine and Terroir – The Geoscience Perspective. Macqueen, R. W., and Meinert, L. D., (eds.), Geoscience Canada Reprint Series Number 9, Geological Association of Canada, St. John's, Newfoundland, 247 pages. (Global) Jones, G.V. 2007. Climate Change and the Global Wine Industry. Australian Wine Industry Technical Conference, Adelaide, Australia. July 28–August 2, 2007. (Global) Jones, G.V., White, M.A., Cooper, O.R., and Storchmann, K. 2005. Climate change and global wine quality. Climate Change 73: 319-343. (Global) Mozell, M.R., and Thach, L. 2014. The impact of climate change on the global wine industry: Challenges & Solutions. Wine Economics and Policy 3(2): 81-89. (Global) Sadras, V.O., and Moran, M.A. 2012. Elevated temperatures decouples antho- cyanins and sugars in berries of Shiraz and Cabernet Franc. Australian Journal of Grape and Wine Research 18: 115-122. (Australia) Teixeira, A., Eiras-Dias, J., Castellarin, S. D., and Gerós, H. 2013. Berry phe- nolics of grapevine under challenging environments. International Journal of Molecular Sciences 14: 18711-18739. (Global) White, M. A., Diffenbaugh, N. S., Jones, G.V., Pal, J. S., and Giorgi, F. 2006. Extreme heat reduces and shifts United States premium wine production in the 21st century. PNAS 103(30): 11217-11222. (United States).

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