Château Pape Clément & Deep Planet
Anticipate the effects of climate change in the vineyard
by using satellite imagery
Climate change : a major challenge for Bordeaux wine
Bernard Magrez continues its initiatives to anticipate the effects of climate change in the vineyard by using satellite imagery and advanced predictions with Deep Planet, a start-up member of the Bernard Magrez incubator and incubated by the European Space Agency.
Frost, hail, heat waves, drought, early harvest: 2022 was the year of all climatic records in the Bordeaux region.
Marked by episodes of drought and heat waves that followed one another like never before, the 2022 wine season allowed us to draw two major lessons for the future of Bordeaux.
Vintage 2022: a window to the future
A promising 2022 vintage
The drought and heat wave that blighted 2022 had, in fact, a beneficial effect on the grapes. At Château Pape Clément, a Grand Cru Classé in Graves, the vines proved to be more resilient than expected and produced a quality of grapes that will make the wines of the 2022 vintage a reference for decades to come.
Uncertainty about future climate impacts
The 2022 vintage reflects the average climatic conditions that Bordeaux vineyards could experience between 2050 and 2080 and allows us to draw a certain number of lessons. However, it is only an average: some years will be marked by much more extreme events than the heat waves observed in 2022.
Satellites to predict drought episodes and improve viticultural practices
Inspired by the photographic documentation of the effects of climate change carried out by Thomas Pesquet during his last stint in the International Space Station, the technical and research teams at Bernard Magrez Vineyards had the idea of joining forces with Deep Planet.
This company, created by researchers from the University of Oxford in 2018, incubated by the European Space Agency, and a member of the Bernard magrez Start-Up Win incubator, has been studying vine health and soil dryness on the blocks of the Château Pape Clément vineyards since 2021.
The goal of this unprecedented study is to explore the possibility of using data acquired by the Sentinel 2 satellite, which orbits 786 km above our heads, to identify in an exceptionally precise manner the areas of the vineyard most suceptible to drought. Using regular satellite images, Deep Planet's predictive algorithms provide dynamic information on vineyard health.
The results will allow will us to modify viticultural practices to develop resistance to heat waves in the years to come.
Promising results at Château Pape Clément,
Grand Cru Classé de Graves
The first results are extremely promising and reveal that the great terroirs of Château Pape Clément, a Grand Cru Classé in Graves, show good resistance to heat waves. The metrically accurate data acquired also showed that the amount of water available in the soils varies significantly, in some cases, within the same block. This variation reveals a potential for adapting practices to limit the effects of climate change on vines through the use of precision viticultural practices.
The next steps in the Maison Bernard Magrez studies include merging the data acquired with the drones and sensors on board the electric tractors that survey the vineyards and inform the teams about the health of the vines in real time.
Predicting the future of wine of 2050
This analysis using satellites imagery complements the "La Tour Carnet - Bordeaux 2050" project, which aims to simulate the impact of global warming on vines and wine by 2050 and to study the adaptation of different grape varities to new climatic conditions. Developed using cutting-edge technologies borrowed from the aeronautics industry, the system stimulates the effects of climate change by 2050 and thus predicts the grape varieties best suited to produce high-quality wines in the Bordeaux climate of tomorrow.
"The climatic and environmental challenges we face are of unprecedented magnitude and we must rise to the challenge. We must reinvent our profession as winegrowers and innovate wherever possible to ensure the sustainability of the production of the great Bordeaux wines."
Bernard Magrez, Owner of 4 Grands Crus Classés
"The alliance of the Bernard Magrez Vineyards Scientific Center with the space industry is central to anticipating the effects of climate change for our vineyards. This allows us to ensure the quality of our wines for decades to come and to live up to the 770 years of wine history at Château Pape Clément, Grand Cru Classé de Graves."
Julien Lecourt, Research and Development Manager
Maison Bernard Magrez