The potential carbon neutrality of sustainable viticulture

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Sustainable viticulture allows food production with a potential carbon neutrality without exacerbating climate change: it’s the important result achieved by a study recently published on Journal of Cleaner Production (among the authors, CMCC researcher Maria Vincenza Chiriacò, IAFES – Impacts on Agriculture, Forests and Ecosystem Services Division). The study aimed at quantify the actual impact on climate of sustainable practices applied to a grape-to-wine system in Italy. The overall budget of greenhouse gas fluxes has been assessed at wine farm level, from the vineyard to the final bottle of wine.

The study demonstrates in particular that sustainable vineyard management can generate negative biogenic emissions ( -0.27 Mg CO2eq per year per hectare) in soils and biomass, able to completely compensate anthropogenic emissions from the agronomic management (0.24 Mg CO2eq per year per hectare) resulting in a zero balance of climate-changing gases.
The carbon footprint (CF) of sustainable wine is 0,79 ± 0,14 kg CO2eq per bottle. Therefore, sustainable agricultural production can be able to completely cancel out the impact of agriculture on climate.

 Read the full paper. Free access until May 28, 2019.

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