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"Those who still CAST doubt the existence of Climate Change are behind the times"

February 01, 2011

News Release - “Those who still CAST doubt the existence of Climate Change are behind the times”

§ According to the organiser of The World Congress on Climate Change and Wine, the climate situation should have been prevented decades ago and therefore the solution “is now way too late”.

§ “ The fact is that the great majority of the wine sector in Spain should adopt a much more responsible and proactive attitude”

Málaga (SPAIN), 1 of February, 2011. The president of The Wine Academy of Spain, Pancho Campo MW, has stated that “those people who still cast doubt on the existence of climate change are outdated and have not documented themselves accordingly”. According to Campo, who is currently busy organising the third World Congress on Climate Change and Wine, (which will take place in Marbella on the 13th and 14th of April), we have reached a point in which “instead of questioning the situation we should focus on taking action and finding a solution”.

One of the industries in which climate change will have a larger impact is the wine sector. Campo warns how these changes will affect the wine making process, which could result in a change in quality level produced by some grape varieties.

During the growth period, the average temperature has increased in most quality wine producing regions. In very warm areas, the grapes reach an excessive alcohol ripening process accompanied by a lack of aromatic complexity. “The acidity tends to decrease, which is a drawback since a balance in acidity is a fundamental characteristic of a great wine”. The potassium also tends to increase as well as the ph, favouring the appearance of plagues, which in turn affect the vineyards. The excessive solar irradiation in some regions tends to “burn” the grapes. “ All these changes hinder certain varieties by decreasing their quality since they are forced to adapt to new climate parameters which they are not accustomed to”. 

As for this conscious raising subject in Spain, Campo has indicated that although there are currently investigative projects as well as advanced initiatives in the private sector like the ones applied in Miguel Torres, Gramona or Cenit-Demeter, “ the industry should adopt a much more responsible and proactive attitude”. “Sustainability, environment and especially climate change are an unresolved matter that affect many regulating bodies and wineries”, he stated.

Advice for the industry. Campo urges professionals in the industry to become acquainted with the changes in climate and the repercussions these changes can have in the winemaking process. In order to aid in expanding this knowledge, he recommends the assistance to congresses and seminars such as the one being held soon in Marbella.

For Campo, one the first steps to reaching a solution is to accept that there is a problem “which we must deal with as soon as possible”. “We need to tackle the problem as individuals, businesses and as an industry. In Spain we have been pampered by government subsidies and entities which have always rescued the industry.

This Third World Congress on Climate Change and Wine will rely on professionals in this field who have already begun implementing new concepts in Spain and abroad. In order to fight climate change, Campo believes that we need to focus on two issues: one of prevention, which would aid in diminishing CO2 emissions as well as energy costs; and mitigation and adaptation directed specifically to vineyards and wineries.

“The economical crisis will sooner or latter pass, but the damages to the environment can be irreversible and have worst consequences than a recession”, says Campo. He believes that the solution “is already too late” since it is a phenomenon which should have been prevented decades ago”. “We are still able to prevent further damage which is why the reaction should be imminent. By doing so, we will save money and effort in the long run, but most importantly we have a moral obligation to the new generations”.

Third World Congress on Climate Change and Wine. As well as his incessant study on climate change, Pancho Campo has organised the Third World Congress on Climate Change and Wine which will take place on the 13th and 14th of April in Marbella and will feature the participation of Kofi Annan as guest speaker as well as other important personalities of the wine industry.

Joao de Lima, General Director of The Climate Project Spain (TCPSpain), has recently named the president of The Wine Academy of Spain member of the board of advisors. It is an international environmental organisation created by ex vice president of the United States, Al Gore, in order to make people, businesses and government entities aware of the global warming crisis that affects our planet.

PANCHO CAMPO MASTER OF WINE. Pancho Campo (Santiago de Chile, 1961) is the first Spanish national to have achieved the prestigious title of Master of Wine, a title that is widely recognised and respected all over the world. There are currently 289 Masters of Wine in the entire world from 23 different countries. In 2003 he founded The Wine Academy of Spain, a private organisation focusing mainly on the education of wine professionals as well as wine lovers; the international promotion of Spanish wines trough the Wine Experience Program, Spain as a tourist destination, the study of the impact of climate change in the wine industry; and study trips to different wine producing regions in collaboration with The University of California Davis (USA). Furthermore, The Wine Academy of Spain is an approved program provider (APP) for the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), has organised the World Congress on Climate Change and Wine, Winefuture Rioja ’09 and Vinoble 2010. The calendar for 2011 will feature the Third World Congress on Climate Change and Wine, taking place in Marbella, as well as the upcoming edition of Winefuture which will take place in Hong Kong on the 6th, 7th and 8th of November 2011.


Marta Olea

Comunicación

The Wine Academy of Spain S.L.

Conj. Res. Pueblo Los Arcos Nº 2 - Elviria

Tel. Directo: (+34) 636 466 179

Tel. 952 83 08 06 - Fax. 91 101 84 29

Email: media@thewineacademy.es

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