Statistical modelling of grapevine yield in the Port Wine region under present and future climate conditions
Santos, J. A., Malheiro, A. C., Karremann, M. K. and Pinto, J. G. (2011) Statistical modelling of grapevine yield in the Port Wine region under present and future climate conditions. International Journal of Biometeorology, 55 (2). pp. 119-131. ISSN 1432-1254
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1007/s00484-010-0318-0
The impact of projected climate change on wine production was analysed for the Demarcated Region of Douro, Portugal. A statistical grapevine yield model (GYM) was developed using climate parameters as predictors. Statistically significant correlations were identified between annual yield and monthly mean temperatures and monthly precipitation totals during the growing cycle. These atmospheric factors control grapevine yield in the region, with the GYM explaining 50.4% of the total variance in the yield time series in recent decades. Anomalously high March rainfall (during budburst, shoot and inflorescence development) favours yield, as well as anomalously high temperatures and low precipitation amounts in May and June (May: flowering and June: berry development). The GYM was applied to a regional climate model output, which was shown to realistically reproduce the GYM predictors. Finally, using ensemble simulations under the A1B emission scenario, projections for GYM-derived yield in the Douro Region, and for the whole of the twenty-first century, were analysed. A slight upward trend in yield is projected to occur until about 2050, followed by a steep and continuous increase until the end of the twenty-first century, when yield is projected to be about 800 kg/ha above current values. While this estimate is based on meteorological parameters alone, changes due to elevated CO2 may further enhance this effect. In spite of the associated uncertainties, it can be stated that projected climate change may significantly benefit wine yield in the Douro Valley.