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Distribution of climate suitability for viticulture in the United Kingdom in 2100

Georgeson, L; Maslin, M; (2017) Distribution of climate suitability for viticulture in the United Kingdom in 2100. (ECRC Research Report 177 ). UCL Environmental Change Research Centre: London, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

Changes in temperature of the second half of the 20th Century led to significant changes in the areas of the UK suitable for high-quality viticulture. A warming climate and acceptable rainfall levels (although not without a number of risks to harvest yields) has made it possible for UK wine producers to produce high quality sparkling wine in the so-called ‘golden triangle’ south of London. As the climate continues to change over the course of the 21st century through to 2100, the possibilities for UK viticulture will again continue to shift. While rising temperatures bring warmer growing seasons that may create potential opportunities for grape varieties that are currently widely planted in Europe to be grown in the UK, as well as having the potential to reduce the risk of spring frosts that inhibit bud growth, warmer climate conditions in the UK also bring a number of threats to UK wine growers. Chief amongst these threats are the increases in rainfall and the increasing risk of extreme weather events. For the long-term development of UK viticulture, it is important to assess a range of possible climate futures for 2100. The potential for significant changes to climatic conditions will require long term changes in strategy, skills and human capital development and significant further research to mitigate risks and identify potential opportunities from adapting UK viticulture to climate change. We have analysed one potential climate change scenario based on three key variables for growing high quality wine grapes, based on a ‘middle-of-the-road’ projection of changing temperatures and rainfall for the UK for 2100 due to climate change. Overall our findings suggest that, according to our estimates, that the UK may become an ‘intermediate climate’ wine region by 2100. It is currently a marginal, coolclimate region. However, some of the areas of the south of England may become either too hot, too wet, or both, to grow quality wine grapes in 2100.

Type: Report
Title: Distribution of climate suitability for viticulture in the United Kingdom in 2100
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: https://www.geog.ucl.ac.uk/research/research-centr...
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10115230
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