<a href="https://www.greenlifestylemag.com.au/blogs/leon#">The Business of Green</a>

The Business of Green

Money matters in the green world, by Leon Gettler.

Carbon neutral boozing


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While all the world's attention has been focussed on Copenhagen, with everyone hoping the world's leaders will come up with a solution, there are some other interesting developments happening out there - developments that might point to future directions for businesses.

One of the most interesting is the sale of Australian carbon neutral wines at Copenhagen. This particular sort of drop comes out of Taylors Eighty Acre wines from the Clare Valley, South Australia. It claims to be the world's first 100 per cent carbon neutral range of wines based on the international standard for Life Cycle Assessment.

And with Christmas around the corner, wine many of us will be imbibing with family and friends. The question with climate change is how long can wine makers last.

Climate change is likely to transform the $US300 billion wine industry forever. According to a study by scientists and climatologists at the University of Burgundy in France, changes to the climate can absolutely devastate the industry.

Changes can result in excess sugar, acidity defects, falling production, new diseases, premature harvests in the form of shifting production calendars and disintegration of the specificity of the wine. Wine buffs will not be able to tell where it came from and it will taste different. And that would absolutely devastate vineyards.

Carbon neutral wine is the wine industry's future.

How do you make carbon neutral wines? It can involve everything from replacing old machinery with energy efficient models, investing in tank insulation, replacing incandescent bulbs with fluorescents in the office, tasting room and winery and using bio-diesel in company vehicles and farm equipment. The stuff that comes out the other end tastes the same.

Indeed, wine companies around the world have latched on to carbon neutral boozing, with this part of the industry expanding significantly.

With Christmas around the corner, not to mention Christmas parties, people's thoughts often turn to booze. But carbon neutral wines are not necessarily perfect for the environment. A whole of other factors need to be taken into account, like, for example, the trucking of the wine across the country to the shop. And then there's the way it's packaged.

Often the best solution is to drink wine that is produced locally, or at least close to where you are. Remember that organic doesn't mean less carbon, that buying bigger is usually better, so go for the magnum, not the half bottle, and casks (or recycled plastic bottles) are typically better than glass.

The wine industry has about 15 years to adapt to climate change. What should it do? Would you buy a carbon neutral wine?