What is in this article?:
- The Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) non-profit trade association has announced the release of the Napa Valley-specific climate study titled Climate and Phenology in Napa Valley: A Compilation and Analysis of Historical Data.
- In 2006, a researcher garnered national media attention by predicting that Napa Valley would soon become too warm to grow fine wine grapes.
- However, the experience of wine grape growers has been contrary to the notion that Napa Valley has warmed substantially.
Artificial warm bias
Shorter records collected by Napa weather observers indicate that these long-term stations are registering an artificial warm bias which has likely increased over the last several decades. The study recommends that the Napa Valley farming community should formally assess the adequacy of its current climate observations and establish a protocol to maintain a high-quality, long-term climate monitoring network.
"I am proud of the leadership taken by the Napa Valley Vintners in this climate study. We have strong benchmarks in place that will further allow us to track what changes may occur in our unique climate--really specific to the Napa Valley. Though we are just 4 percent of California's wine grape harvest, we account for 34 percent of the value of the California wine industry on the US economy. It's in all of our best interests to ensure a long and healthy future in fine wine from the Napa Valley," said Kathleen Heitz Myers, president of the NVV board of directors.
Additional research beyond this study continues on a number of fronts, looking at what in-field practices could be employed should climate change take the form of regional warming, such as how canopies and cover crops are managed as easy, short-term solutions. Napa Valley growers and vintners are raising awareness of what can be done locally while thinking globally with programs like Napa Green Certified Land and Winery, which are the most comprehensive green initiatives in the wine industry and that have the well-earned reputation for going above and beyond when it comes to environmental best practices.
The Napa Valley Vintners is the non-profit trade association responsible for promoting and protecting the Napa Valley appellation as the premier winegrowing region. From seven founding members in 1944, today the association represents 400 Napa Valley wineries and collectively is a leader in the world-wide wine industry. To learn more about our region and its legendary American wines, visit www.napavintners.com