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Climate change initiative welcomed by Defra

Published:  23 July, 2008

The publication of a new climate change project has been welcomed by Environment Secretary Hilary Benn.

The Minister for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said the 2 million Defra-funded programme showed the recent climate change summit in Bali was not a remote issue and affected the UK directly.

Consisting of five separate reports and a UKCIP08 website, the project will see academics, Met Office climate scientists and others collaborate on global warming projections.

This first report highlights temperatures in Central England have increased by almost a degree Celsius since the 1970s with 2006 being the warmest year since records began.

Changes to the sea surface temperatures around the UK coast have risen in the past three years also by about 0.7 degrees Celsius.

Benn commented: "This report shows that climate change is happening in the UK - and it's happening now. All of us - governments, businesses and individuals - need to be able to plan for the future."

Issues of environmental sustainability are already beginning to register in the global wine industry with countries such as Australia and New Zealand already committed to sound agricultural guidelines.

From 2009, all wines exported from South Africa will adhere to the stringent Integrated Production of Wine (IPW) certification - ensuring eco-friendly production methods.