Climate change and vine protection : the case of mildews management in Burgundy

Abstract : Viticulture worldwide is currently facing two major challenges: adapting to climate change and reducing its environmental footprint. Plant protection is a central aspect of these challenges, firstly because pests and diseases development is strongly controlled by climate conditions, and secondly, because viticulture requires in many regions large quantities of pesticides. Phytosanitary protection is even more crucial for terroir-based viticulture areas, because the negative image given by excessive pesticide use impacts the whole region which reputation is partly built on environmental friendly practices. Moreover, most of terroir wines sensory properties and fame rely on specific cultivars, which makes it difficult to replace them using diseases resistant varieties. This study addresses the potential impact of climate change on pesticide use to control powdery and downy mildew in Burgundy. To assess the past evolution of diseases risk, a database composed by yearly number of applications of phytosanitary treatments for powdery and downy mildew diseases was built. This information was collected from 400 grapevine growers originating from 5 sub-regions of Burgundy. The data refer to yearly average number of treatments during the 1995-2014 period. Pesticide applications was related to climate by means of multiple linear regression models between the average number of treatments for powdery and downy mildews control and monthly temperature and monthly rainfall indices from April to July. Models providing the lowest error (estimated trough leave-one-out cross-validation) were selected for each of the 5 Burgundy wine sub-regions. According to each region, mildews yearly treatments number were significantly related to monthly climate data. In most models, May and June average temperature were selected with negative regression coefficients while April and May monthly precipitation were selected with positive regression coefficients. These models were fed with 1980-2100 temperature and rainfall projected data using CMIP5 RCP8.5 scenario from 18 GCM (General Circulation Models) statistically downscaled and debiased to match a daily 12 km target resolution. Increasing temperature and a slight ensemble rainfall increase (depending on the GCM) simulated during spring and early summer had inverse effects on models trend. However, regression models project a decreasing trend of the number of treatments for mildews control along the 21st century, based upon GCM data. Spraying numbers are expected to slightly vary in the future (-4,8 to -34.1% reduction), which strengthens the need for alternative plant protection strategies to match both consumer and policies promoting lower pesticides use for viticulture.
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Journal articles
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Submitted on : Tuesday, June 18, 2019 - 10:19:52 AM
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Sébastien Zito, Amelia Caffarra, Yves Richard, Thierry Castel, Benjamin Bois. Climate change and vine protection : the case of mildews management in Burgundy. E3S Web of Conferences, EDP Sciences, 2018, 50, pp.01006. ⟨10.1051/e3sconf/20185001006⟩. ⟨hal-02158511⟩

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