On 15th December 2020, VISCA Final Conference was held virtually to present the results of the project and the way forward. The conference attracted around 60 participants with a variety of profiles: viticulturists, wine producers, scientists, agricultural communities, software providers, entrepreneurs, media, among others who connected to the e-conference from 10 countries: Belgium, France, Greece, Italy, Israel, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Tunisia and the UK.
The e-conference started with a welcoming statement from the project coordinator (METEOSIM) by Josep Sole Maria and the CEO of METEOSIM Oriol de Tera who opened the floor to the two guest speakers from the European Commission: Sasa Zavadlav (VISCA project Officer) and Marjan Van Meerloo, Directorate General for Research & Innovation. They both presented 'R&I contribution to the Green Deal objectives: Climate Action'.
After that, a session on VISCA presentation and results was organized. A short presentation of VISCA was made by the project Coordinator Josep Maria Solé. Then, Claudio Rossi from LINKS Foundation made a short live demo of the VISCA Decision Support System (DSS) & its added value. The DSS is a Progressive Web Application which integrates climate and agricultural models with farmers’ management specifications to design short practices, medium- and long-term adaptation strategies to climate change. The live demo showed the integrated dashboard of the DSS with its 3 main widgets (phenology, sugar accumulation, irrigation and weather forecasts) as well as the features in relation to the map-based visualization. Later, the key results of the validation of the DSS and the climate services as well as the outcomes from the agronomic techniques: crop forcing and shoot trimming were illustrated by Omar Garcia from IRTA. VISCA solutions were demonstrated in 3 sites in Italy, Portugal and Spain . An interactive round table with end-users representing Codorniu (Xavier Bordes), Symington (Fernando Alves) and Mastroberardino (Antonio Dente) was part of this session where they shared their feedback from the implementation of VISCA solutions.
Moreover, external speakers from the agricultural sector as well as other EU-funded projects and initiatives joined the event and shared their experiences & results on climate change adaptation in viticulture as well as their experience on climate services applied in different sectors. A total of 6 distinguished speakers presented the following:
- Applications of Remote Sensing ET mapping for climate change adaptation in Viticulture by Dr. Joaquim Bellvert Rios (IRTA)
- Climate Change Impact Mitigation For European Viticulture (Clim4Vitis) by Prof. João Carlos Andrade dos Santos (UTAD, Portugal)
- Implementation of integrated and innovative precision agriculture management strategies to reduce the occurrence of ochratoxins along the vine value chain products: grapes, raisins/currants and wine (OCHRAVINE control) by Christina Lagogianni (AUA, Greece)
- Turning climate-related information into added value for traditional MEDiterranean Grape, OLive and Durum wheat food systems (Med-Gold) by Alessandro Dell'Aquila (ENEA, Italy)
- MEDCLIV: a network for the Mediterranean vine & wine ecosystem by Emanuele Eccel (fmach, Italy)
- Sub-seasonal to Seasonal climate forecasting for Energy (S2S4E) by Albert Soret Miravet (BSC, Spain)
Finally, the e-conference was concluded with a presentation on the next chapter of VISCA: the 'Exploitation of VISCA DSS and the Way Forward' by Elizabeth A. Nerantzis from Alpha Consult. Although the project comes to an end in December 2020, the commercialization of VISCA DSS and the climate services are yet to start a new phase!
If you missed the conference, you may watch it on VISCA YouTube Channel.