A Commitment to Climate Resilience

© Sarah Anne Risk

NVG's Commitment to Promoting Climate Resilience


Photo by Sarah Anne Risk

As an organization, we are deeply passionate about education in sustainability and agricultural preservation. To this end, we deliver dozens of educational programs to Napa County growers each year centered on farming with the highest respect for people and the planet.


Building on this legacy of stewardship, we recognize an ever-growing need for leadership in ensuring Napa County’s resilience in the face of climate challenges and for setting a worldwide example in developing climate solutions. We view our involvement in this as embedded in NVG’s mission and continue to expand programming and educational tools on climate-smart farming techniques aimed at sequestering carbon and promoting regenerative practices. NVG is excited by the fact that best farming practices have the potential to result in significant ecosystem services to the great benefit to our local climate and environment.


Opportunities for Napa Valley Grapegrowers to Mitigate Climate Change





Photos by Sarah Anne Risk

Growers cover a lot of ground!

  • 11% of the planet is covered in farmland
  • There are 18 M acres of vineyard worldwide
  • Vineyards not only can be carbon neutral, but can be climate positive over the medium and long term

This means there is vast opportunity for grapegrowers to help mitigate climate change by maximizing the inherent climate benefits of farmland through implementation of responsible farming practices!


The Ecosystem Services of Ag Land

Ecosystem services are the direct and indirect contributions of ecosystems to people and planet and have a major role to play in mitigating climate change and ensuring climate resilience.


Inherent climate benefits of vineyards and healthy soils:


 Photo by Sarah Anne Risk
How growers can maximize and increase climate benefits of vineyards through best practices:

  • Building healthy soils and organic soil matter
  • Permanent cover-cropping strategies
  • Judicious use of compost
  • Planting of native hedgerows and encouraging biodiversity
  • Reducing vineyard waste and environmental practices for handling waste
  • Reduction of water use
  • Habitat restoration
  • Monitoring soil carbon
  • Monitoring and evaluating fuel use
  • Workforce transportation solutions





Photos by Sarah Anne Risk

Examples of NVG's Work on Climate Change to Date


Commitment

Education in environmental best practices with an emphasis on climate is a key component of NVG's Strategic Plan. Along with staff support and Board direction, NVG's Environment & Climate Subcommittee is actively working to provide leadership around and resources on practical climate solutions and best practices in vineyards.


Research

Beginning in 2019, NVG began work with a team of California soil scientists and extension agents spearheaded by Dr. Cristina Lazcano, PhD, UC Davis, to submit a 3-5 year vineyard trial project to study soil health, and the potential for carbon sequestration in Napa Valley soils.  Our eventual goals include developing real metrics for what a “healthy soil” is for premium wine grapes, and as we learn, educating our members and all growers on what practices best impact soil health, carbon sequestration, and a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in our vineyards.

As the project progresses, NVG will be communicating results and information through upcoming educational programs. Consider joining our upcoming 2021 Ahead of the Curve for an update on this exciting vineyard trial!

A special thanks to Dr. Kristin Lowe, Co-Chair NVG Member Services Committee, and Dr. Cristina Lazcano (https://lazcano.faculty.ucdavis.edu/ ) for their work on the development of this timely and important research project, and to all of our NVG Grower members who have agreed to participate in the study.


Advocacy

NVG supports regional climate efforts promoting collaboration between all Napa County jurisdictions - read Napa County's Climate Proclamation


Education

Visit NVG's Viticulture & Sustainability webpages for a library of best practices tools and resources.


Knowledge Share

Read about NVG's work on climate resilience in Eric Asimov's 4-part series on climate and wine in the New York Times


Photo by Peter DaSilva




Read about NVG's participation in the Porto Climate Change Leadership Conference - Napa Valley Grapegrowers Coordinates with Global Wine Industry on Climate Change






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