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French wine in danger due to global warming

French vineyards are on the brink of disaster unless dramatic measures are taken to reduce global CO2 emissions, Greenpeace has warned.

Leading figures from the French wine and culinary world have teamed up with the environmental group in writing an open letter, which has been published in the influential French newspaper Le Monde.

The letter was signed by the proprietors of 35 vineyards from across the country’s major wine regions, along with top chefs Jean-Luc Rabanel, Marc Veyrat and Mauro Colagreco, sommeliers Franck Thomas and Antoine Petrus and oenologist Stéphane Derenoncourt.

‘French wines, elegant and refined, the jewels of our common national heritage, are in danger,’ the letter said.

‘Climate change is rendering our vineyards ever more vulnerable.

‘Summer heat waves, recent hail storms in the Bordeaux region, new diseases arriving from the South, such irregularities will soon become far worse still,’ it warned.

‘If nothing is done to reduce greenhouse gases, vineyards will be displaced 1,000km beyond their traditional borders between now and the end of the century. Terroirs will not survive.”

They call directly upon President Nicolas Sarkozy to push for an ‘ambitious’ climate change agreement at the upcoming United Nations’ conference.

According to the letter, the developed nations need to strike a deal to reduce their CO2 emissions by 40% between now and 2020.

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Written by Graham Tearse

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