AN ONLINE MAPPING TOOL TO GUIDE VITICULTURE EXPANSION IN TASMANIA, AUSTRALIA

Mathew A. Webb1,2, Darren Kidd1, Rhys Stickler1, Andrew Pirie3

1Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment, Prospect, TAS, Australia

2School of Life and Environmental Sciences & Sydney Institute of Agriculture, The University of Sydney, Eveleigh, NSW, Australia

3Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture/School of Agricultural Science at the University of Tasmania, Hobart, 7005, Tas, Australia

Corresponding author: E-mail: Mathew.webb@dpipwe.tas.gov.au

 

ABSTRACT

As part of the Tasmanian government’s AgriVision 2050 plan and a means to facilitate expansion of the Tasmanian wine industry, a comprehensive climate based assessment of the state was implemented to delineate new areas suitable for wine grape production. This paper details how climate variables concerning Frost Risk (FR), Growing Degree Days (GDD) Growing Season Temperature (GST) and Rainfall (Rfall) were spatially quantified at high spatial resolutions (30m grid spacing) and combined to form suitability maps for delineating areas accommodative to table wine grape and sparkling wine grape production (Chardonnay and Pinot Noir cultivars). Evaluation of the climate mapping showed the methods were highly accurate in delineating each climate variable with validation statistics consistent with previous studies. The resulting suitability maps also aligned to the existing arrangements of operating vineyards as well expert knowledge provided by industry. The maps were made publically available through the Tasmanian government online mapping portal, LISTmap https://maps.thelist.tas.gov.au/listmap allowing for spatial interaction and querying. Since April 2018, the maps have received in excess of 27,000 ‘hits’ in the six months to September. Further updates are scheduled into the future to include soil and climate change information into the assessment framework.


BIOGRAPHY

Mathew Webb is Senior Spatial Analyst with the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment (DPIPWE) with over 10 years’ experience in the spatial science industry. He is heavily involved with delivering the mapping component of the Water for Profit Program, a $1.5m government funded program to deliver decisions support tools to improve farm profitability for irrigated agriculture. His recent work includes Table wine and Sparkling wine suitability mapping for the state using the latest advancements in high resolution climate mapping. He is currently a PhD candidate with the University of Sydney and has published scientific studies looking at high resolution climate mapping as applied to delineating frost risk, chilling hours and growing degree days in a viticulture context. His latest research now looks at how they can be applied for real-time and forecasting applications to assist growers in the digital age.

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