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The Future Impact of Climate Change on the California Wine Industry and Actions the State of California Should Take to Address It

Jonathan Gatto
Byungoh Kim
Paasha Mahdavi
Hirochika Namekawa
Hung Tran
California State Assembly Select Committee on Wine
2009

Executive Summary

The wine industry plays a significant role in Californias economy, and as such the future sustainability of the California wine industry is a significant priority of the state government. The industry is fundamentally dependent on California’s unique climate system that until recently has provided farmers with ideal conditions for growing premium grapes. However, it is unclear whether future climate change will strengthen, weaken or disrupt these ideal conditions currently present in premium California wine growing regions. While the wine industry has been pursuing a range of adaptation options to address the ongoing impacts of climate change on wine, the State has pursued a strategy of broad climate change mitigation as well as pest prevention and water management. However, the wine industry is beginning to signal that the State can and must play a greater role in helping the industry prepare for and adapt to the long-term impact of future climate change.

In light of these conditions, there are two crucial unanswered questions that we will address in this report: (1) What will be the future impact of climate change on wine? and (2) What can the State do to help the wine industry in light of this impact? ...

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