Climate change has many people concerned about what will happen to human and animal populations and ecological life. But what about the merlot?
Maybe we shouldn't make wine a priority in the concerns-about-climate-change conversation, but the Los Angeles Times quotes viticulture consultant Richard Smart, who says that wine is an early warning signal of what is to come. He said, "Wine's past will no longer be relevant [in predicting its future] within 50 years. In only 10 years, the palate of our wines will change."
The article explains that at the Climate Change & Wine conference in Barcelona, Spain, last week, experts discussed how the "post-classic" era of wine is near, and it doesn't look pretty. Attributes include a drop in acidity, less color, and higher alcohol levels. In addition, the paper says, the herbaceous flavors disliked by consumers may increase as levels of carbon dioxide rise, leading to out-of-control vegetation growth.
While the warming planet has benefited some European winemakers, even those vineyards will suffer if global temperatures continue to rise as they have.
Until we can address the changes that are affecting the quality of wine, some companies are focusing on issues they can control. According to environmentalgraffiti.com, some beer and wine retailers are using lightweight glass bottles that use 30 percent less glass than traditional bottles. Cheers to that.
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