Date of Award

8-2021

Degree Name

MS in Environmental Sciences and Management

Department/Program

Natural Resources Management

College

College of Agriculture, Food, and Environmental Sciences

Advisor

Dr. Nicholas Babin

Advisor Department

Natural Resources Management

Advisor College

College of Agriculture, Food, and Environmental Sciences

Abstract

This paper examines vineyard perceptions and adoption of climate change adaptation and water conservation measures in the Paso Robles American Viticultural Area (AVA). A survey was distributed to all 220 vineyards and vineyard management companies that operate in the AVA, with a 53.64% response rate. The objective of the survey was to determine vineyard manager and owner attitudes towards climate change and adaptation, as well as their perceptions of how these threats would impact their operation. A second objective was to document the current level of water conservation and climate adaptation while identifying the barriers and opportunities for further adoption of these practices. The third objective was to share a climate projection to assess perceived impacts, attitudes, and perceptions of the projection and capacity to adapt. The final objective was to develop a typology to assist targeted outreach of vineyards. Our results showed that the most important current climate impact is heat, with water regulations and supply being the biggest concern in the future. Vineyards were also found to be relatively unsure about their capability to further implement adaptation measures, with relatively low adoption of most practices already. Decision support tools, like the climate projection, were found to be useful and desired by vineyards for management. Results of our study showed that trust in the information source can be a barrier to use of these tools. We identified further barriers to adoption of practices and identified an outreach strategy using a typology of vineyards, which focused on smaller vineyards and those without wineries. These results can be used to increase efficacy of government and NGO programs that aim to support climate adaptation and water conservation in the region.

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