How climate change reshapes terroir: Global to local shifts in seasonal development with warming

Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Agassiz & Summerland RDC seminar series is inviting us to an interesting presentation by Dr. Elizabeth Wolkovich on Wednesday March 30, 2022 at 11 am (PST). The presentation will be focusing on the Okanagan valley in BC as an example to show how agricultural practices have an impact and how to build resilient systems.

Dr. Elizabeth Wolkovich is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Forestry at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. Dr. Wolkovich is an expert on temporal community ecology and internationally recognized for her research on the effects that climate change has on the temporal assembly of plant communities, in particular its current effects on terroir and grapevine varieties adaptation. For more information on Dr. Wolkovich research visit

‘Climate change is reshaping the terroir of the world's current and future winegrowing regions, with winners and losers determined in part by how growers adapt or not. I will review my lab's global models of winegrape development to show that dire predictions of the demise of winegrowing are strongly mitigated by planting varieties phenologically matched to the regional and local climate, but estimates are less certain under higher warming scenarios. Further, current estimates are still at coarse spatial and temporal scales, making extrapolation to grower-relevant scales tenuous. Applying these global models at vineyard scales requires new approaches, and increased research on the diversity of varieties available. I show how wine grapes possess tremendous diversity across their 1,100 planted varieties in traits that affect responses to climate, especially phenology. Yet new growing regions exploit very little of this diversity, making the resilience of these growing regions potentially lower than established regions. Using the Okanagan as an example, I outline how improved phenological models, at finer spatial scales and for more varieties, can help build resilient local agricultural systems by guiding management each season and, in the longer-term, by guiding planting decisions through future projections.’

If you are planning to attend this seminar, please register using the link below by March 23rd, 2022. A link to the videoconference will be provided to those registered before the seminar.