Effects of climate change on bioclimatic indices in vineyards along Lake Neuchatel, Switzerland
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Theoretical and Applied Climatology
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In this study, we investigated the consequences of climate change on bioclimatic indices in vineyards along the edge of Lake Neuchatel in Switzerland. Like in other vineyards all around the world, the typicity of wines and the phenology of vines have changed, particularly since the 1970s. Trends in the growing season average temperature and in Huglin’s heliothermal index show that the climate in the Neuchatel vineyards changed from very cool or cool to temperate during the last decades. Trends in the cool night index and in the prior to harvest cool night index both indicate that in the near future this wine region will frequently experience temperate instead of cool nights during the weeks leading up to harvest. Our results highlight the need for adaptation strategies, such as an upward elevational shift for Pinot Noir, as climatic conditions will become too warm at its current location in the next decades. They also show that conditions in this region are already favorable for more thermophilic varieties such as Merlot. In the context of global warming, this kind of analysis should be conducted throughout winegrowing regions in order to develop efficient adaptation strategies at the microclimatic scale.
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