SAN FRANCISCO — The California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance (CSWA) has introduced an online tool for calculating greenhouse gas emissions and carbon sequestration in California vineyards. The tool, named the DeNitrification and DeComposition (DNDC) model for winegrapes, was developed to help winegrowers "measure to manage" to reduce input costs and emissions. The tool is part of CSWA's online Sustainable Winegrowing Self-Assessment and Performance Metrics system, the latter of which measures, manages and tracks energy, water and nitrogen use, and greenhouse gas emissions. The tool was developed with partial funding from a three-year California Department of Food and Agriculture Specialty Crop Block Grant.
"More than 1,400 researchers and stakeholders worldwide use the DNDC Model on over 40 agricultural crops to assess the effects of various management practices on greenhouse gas emissions," said Allison Jordan, CSWA executive director. "By incorporating the DNDC model into our program, growers can see more clearly how vineyard practices combine to reduce nitrogen applications, save money and minimize soil-related greenhouse gas emissions. Avoiding excess nitrogen benefits growers' bottom-line, contributes to wine quality and delivers better environmental outcomes."
Jordan explained that the online Performance Metrics system offers a simplified, user-friendly version of the DNDC tool that enables winegrowers to customize the variables that are the most significant drivers of soil-related greenhouse gas emissions in vineyards. These variables include practices such as row spacing, type of tillage, use and type of cover crop, amount of compost and amount of nitrogen applied as fertilizer. Results help growers understand relationships between key practices and emissions, and how to improve. For more DNDC tool information, click here.
CSWA worked with Applied GeoSolutions, UC Davis, SureHarvest, the USDA Agricultural Research Service and other project partners over several years to calibrate and validate the DNDC model for winegrapes, assess the influence of vineyard management practices on greenhouse gas emissions and create a user-friendly tool for use by California winegrowers. To begin using the DNDC tool within the Performance Metrics site, visit https://metrics.sustainablewinegrowing.org where California participants can log in with their CSWA Username and Password or request a new Username.
About the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance
The California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization incorporated in 2003 by Wine Institute and the California Association of Winegrape Growers. CSWA’s mission is to ensure that the California wine community is recognized globally as the leader in sustainable winegrowing in the marketplace and public policy arena through the development and promotion of sustainable practices, tools for education and outreach, partnerships with key stakeholders and prioritizing research. In the last decade, 1,800 vineyard and winery organizations, representing more than 70 percent of California's winegrape acreage and case production, have participated in CSWA's Sustainable Winegrowing Program. See: www.sustainablewinegrowing.org.
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