More Franc Talk…


I am a reluctant activist. Though it was never enough to just make and sell a product, all I ever wanted for RSV was to have a sense of purpose while we farmed and made a wine that spoke for itself. We needed to feel we were doing the “right” thing; that we stood for something; that we were conscientious of the potential damage modern farming does to the environment and that we would do everything possible to heal an ailing earth. What is frustrating is that the answers to climate change are within our grasp but we, as a farming community, are not embracing the change that could transition from being a contributor to becoming the solution for climate change. I need to be more vocal.

Today I received an email from the California Farm Bureau asking me to write our assemblywoman to protest the proposed bill that will ban the sale of all internal combustion engines and light duty vehicles by 2035. Their sensational call to action reads “SAVE OUR FARM VEHICLES.” They make it sound as though it will do irreparable harm to farmers to not be able to buy an ICE vehicle after 2035. All I can assume is that an oil lobbyist is behind this campaign and not a farmer that has lived though the past five years of record fires and record heat. Doing nothing will do irreparable harm to farmers and all life on this planet.

It was a coincidence that I received this email today when I just placed an order for an electric vehicle and have reservations in place for an electric truck and tractor. Even though we currently use biodiesel in our farm vehicles, I can’t wait to mothball our fleet of noisy, polluting, aging diesel trucks and tractors for emission free vehicles that can be charged by solar. Fossil fuel free wine is coming.

The cool Carneros region may become too warm and the weather too erratic for the delicate grapes of Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc if climate change continues to go unchecked… but that will be the least of our problems if farmers find keeping up with a rapidly changing climate beyond our ability to adapt.

Rob Sinskey