Climate change is improving French wine quality

Welcome news for the winemakers of Northern England whose livelihoods were wiped out around 1,000 years ago as the Medieval Warm Period or Medieval Climate Optimum, came to a chilling end, as the Little Ice Age ensued.

Watts Up With That?

NASA study finds climate change shifting wine grape harvests in France and Switzerland- higher-quality wines are typically associated with earlier harvest dates

From NASA/GODDARD SPACE FLIGHT CENTER

French vineyards like the one in the photograph are experiencing earlier harvests in recent years as the region's climate has warmed. CREDIT Credits: Elizabeth Wolkovich/Harvard University French vineyards like the one in the photograph are experiencing earlier harvests in recent years as the region’s climate has warmed.CREDIT Credits: Elizabeth Wolkovich/Harvard University

A new study from NASA and Harvard University finds that climate change is diminishing an important link between droughts and the timing of wine grape harvests in France and Switzerland.

During a study of wine grape harvest dates from 1600 to 2007, researchers discovered harvests began shifting dramatically earlier during the latter half of the 20th century. These shifts were caused by changes in the connection between climate and harvest timing. While earlier harvests from 1600 to 1980 occurred in years with warmer and drier conditions during spring and summer, from 1981 to 2007 warming attributed to climate change resulted…

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