AgriCLASS – meaningful climate information for growers

Project: AgriCLASS – Agricultural Climate Advisory Services


Overview: A project to develop a proof-of-concept system to produce meaningful climate change impact indicators for growers of long-lived crops.


Purpose: This contract, awarded by ECMWF on behalf of the Copernicus Climate Service, aims to establish whether climate data and climate predictions can inform producers’ decisions on planting and managing “woody” perennial crops in relation to climate change. It is using three crops as case studies – vines (South West France), olives (Tuscany, Italy) and beech forests (Molise, Italy). Woody crops, which take time to mature and have a long harvesting life, can be vulnerable to factors connected with climate change, including changes in average temperature and rainfall. Changes in the timing of the growth and harvesting of grapes affects the quality and typicality of wine produced, including its alcohol content; olive crops are vulnerable to pests such as the olive fruit fly, whose breeding cycle is linked to temperature, and beech plantations are sensitive to drought.


IEA role: The IEA Technical Team is contributing skills to the system design which will translate climate datasets into an indicator that is meaningful to producers.


Timeline: Phase 1: December 2015 – Early 2017.


Partners: Telespazio Vega UK Ltd (leading), University of Reading, IEA, Met Office, University of Molise in Italy, CGI, Telespazio France and eGeos.


Links: European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), Copernicus Climate Change Service

AgriCLASS is one of three Copernicus projects the IEA is working on, see the full list here.

Read more of our projects here.

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agriculture and climate change