NZ winery among global IWCA roster in mission to decarbonise global wine industry

International Wineries for Climate Action (IWCA) has announced four new applicant wineries have committed to tackle the severity of the climate crisis by taking immediate action to reduce their carbon emissions.

The wineries include Yealands Wine Group (New Zealand), Spottswoode Estate (US), Symington Family Estates (Portugal) and VSPT Wine Group (Chile).

Founded in February 2019 by Familia Torres (Spain) and Jackson Family Wines (US), IWCA is a collaborative working group committed to accelerating innovative solutions that will mitigate the impacts of climate change through the decarbonisation of the global wine industry.

IWCA’s objective is for all members to have a long-term strategy to reduce 80% of their carbon emissions by 2045, with a shorter-term target of 50% by 2030.

To be recognised as full standing IWCA members, wineries must fulfil the following requirements:

  • Be powered by at least 20% onsite renewable energy (excluding REC purchases).
  • Have completed a minimum baseline third-party verified GHG emissions inventory for a standardised set of emissions categories across Scopes 1-3 (using the World Resources Institute’s GHG Protocol following the ISO 14064 process).
  • Have demonstrated at least a 25% reduction in CO2 emissions per unit of wine produced from a baseline emissions inventory year.
  • Commit to reducing total emissions (Scopes 1-3) 50% by 2030 and 80% by 2045.

IWCA applicant members have all completed a credible baseline GHG inventory that encompasses at least Scopes 1 and 2 and have committed to fulfilling the remaining requirements to become full standing IWCA members within five years.

New IWCA applicant members include:

Yealands Wine Group is the first winery in New Zealand to be certified carbon-zero from inception as a result of its dedication to reducing carbon emissions through the entire lifecycle of its wines.

Aiming to be one of the most sustainable wine producers in the world, Yealands is highly innovative and continually seeks new ways to reduce its carbon footprint.

“Producing world-class wines doesn’t have to be at the expense of the environment,” said Tiffani Graydon, CEO of Yealands Wine Group.

“We’re delighted to join IWCA and work collaboratively with other sustainability leaders in the industry to make a global difference, both now and in the future.”

Spottswoode Estate is a historic, family-owned winegrowing estate in Napa Valley, California dedicated to creating meaningful change through nurturing their CCOF-certified organic and biodynamic vineyards, community and planet.

A certified Napa Green vineyard and winery, Spottswoode has farmed organically since 1985 (the first winery in Napa to farm organically) and achieved certification in 1992.

In 2000, Spottswoode spearheaded the restoration of Spring Creek, which defines the Estate’s southern boundary.

In 2007, solar arrays were installed, and Spottswoode joined 1% for the Planet. The winery is currently seeking LEED certification for its winery and pursuing B Corp Certification.

“We’re deeply dedicated to being responsible stewards of the land,” said CEO Beth Novak Milliken.

“We hope to lead by example and be the change this planet so desperately needs.”

Symington Family Estates is a leading Port and wine producer in northern Portugal who has invested significantly in viticulture R&D to adapt to climate change.

As the first certified B Corporation wine company in Portugal, Symington has a broad sustainability plan with a series of measurable goals for 2025, including objectives for end-to-end CO2 reductions, renewable energy, electric vehicles, and water and energy efficiency.

“We’re committed to working with our supply partners to reduce emissions and our overall carbon footprint,” said Rob Symington, associate director of Symington Family Estates.

“We’re very pleased to join IWCA as we believe this rigorous framework can lead the wine sector’s response to this existential threat. We have no time to waste.”

VSPT Wine Group is one of the largest exporters of Chilean wine in the world.

Committed to sustainable wine production for over 10 years, the company’s primary focus is utilizing 100% renewable energy for wine production, recovering ecosystems through a robust biodiversity plan, and pioneering waste management programs in Chile.

“Our sense of urgency and concern for the future of Chile’s viticulture deeply aligns with IWCA’s values and commitment to mitigating climate change around the world,” says Barbara Wolff, corporate affairs and innovation officer.