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Future climatic suitability of the Emilia-Romagna (Italy) region for grape production

Teslić, Nemanja, Vujadinović, Mirjam, Ruml, Mirjana, Ricci, Arianna, Vuković, Ana, Parpinello, Giuseppina P., Versari, Andrea
Regional environmental change 2019 v.19 no.2 pp. 599-614
Vitis, bioclimatic indexes, climate, climate change, climate models, grapes, viticulture, weather, wines, Italy
Grape production is highly responsive to weather conditions and therefore very sensitive to climate change. To evaluate how viticulture in the traditional Italian wine region Emilia-Romagna could be affected by climate change, several bioclimatic indices describing the suitability for grapevine production were calculated for two future periods (2011–2040 and 2071–2100) using CORDEX (Coordinated Regional Climate Downscaling Experiment) high-resolution climate simulations under two Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP) scenarios—RCP 4.5 and RCP 8.5. The projections for both of the RCP scenarios showed that most of the Emilia-Romagna region will remain suitable for grape production during the period 2011–2040. By the end of the twenty-first century, the suitability to produce grapes in Emilia-Romagna could be threatened to a greater or smaller extent, depending on the scenario. During the period 2071–2100, the entire Emilia-Romagna region will be too hot for grape production under the RCP 8.5 scenario. Under the RCP 4.5 scenario, changes will be milder, suggesting that the Emilia-Romagna region could still be suitable for grape cultivation by the end of the twenty-first century but would likely require certain adjustments.