Not a week ago, I was seriously considering prostituting my wines to get entry into the II International Conference on Climate Change and Wine hosted in Barcelona. For years, Al Gore (the keynote speaker for the event) has been one of my role models, a man willing to stand up for truth, acceptance and change on both the micro and macro level. His film, An Inconvenient Truth, shocked and frightened me into seeing how dramatically the world is changing, yet comforting me to know that change is possible if we’re willing to see the reality for what it is. Clearly, with a conference boasting of an impressive list of speakers fighting for conservation in winemaking including, Pancho Campo (a pioneer in conservation and winemaking, as well as the host) and Dr. David Smart (renowned scientist at UC Davis), just to name a few, I was eager to attend.
Years ago, a close friend of mine shared a personal mantra of his that reminded me of Al Gore’s message: we are all comfortable being uncomfortable. I love this expression because it sums up exactly what humans tend to do when life gets rocky; they fall into complacence. Rather than ripping away the blinders and accepting that we are all responsible for this planet, many choose to keep them on, blaming and giving excuses for why temperatures are rising, glaciers are melting and storms are increasing in intensity. Coincidence? I think not!
Climate Change in Spain
A few years back, Decanter wrote an interesting article on the consequences of climate change on Spanish vintners like Bodegas Torres, reporting that:
- Increasingly hostile conditions associated with climate change are forcing vintners to head north.
- The most dire predictions call for up to half of Spain to be transformed into desert in the next 10-20 years.
- Vitners are experiencing higher alcohol levels in their grapes as a result of the hotter temperatures.
- There has already been a dramatic decrease in water, whereby affecting the amount of water available to wineries.
Fortunately, as of today, we’ve just received confirmation that Catavino will be attending the II International Conference on Climate Change and Wine. The conference will be held on the 15th and 16th of February in Barcelona, and we intend on blogging from the event! If we’re lucky, we may be able to chat with people such as David Pearson, General Manager for Opus One, Roger Voss from Wine Enthusiast, Siobhan Turner, Executive Director for the IMW, Spanish wine critics José Peñín and Jesús Flores, and Oz Clarke, one of the world’s leading wine experts and star of Oz and James’s Big Wine Adventure.
We are incredibly excited about this conference and we’re interested to hear your opinions on this event and the issues surrounding it, such as:
- Do you feel that a conference of this caliber can make a considerable difference in the world of wine?
- How will climate change impact both the wine industry and the consumer?
- If the climate is changing, how is it affecting vines and viticulture?
- How does cork and alternative closures play a part in conservation?
Keep in mind that we may be the only wine bloggers covering this event. And although Harpers, Decanter, Wine Spectator, Los Angeles Times, Wine Enthusiast, La Revue du Vin, Fine Wine Magazine, National Geographic and Newsweek will be covering the event, among some Spanish media such as Sibaritas, Enología y Viticultura and La Vanguardia, we’ll do our best to keep you updated before, during and after the event. So please, share your thoughts, your ideas, your opinions and your questions. As always, we’re listening!