Napa Valley Vintners Launch Green Winery Certification Program


2/8/2008 - Napa Valley, CA-Napa Valley Vintners (NVV), the non-profit trade association of more than 300 Napa Valley wineries announces the launch of Napa Green Certified Winery (NGCW), a comprehensive program to help reduce the carbon footprint and institute a set of green business practices for winery production facilities in Napa County. After a successful pilot program in 2007, NGCW is now open to all wineries in Napa County, building on the region’s reputation for leadership in forward-thinking environmental programs.

The program is a Napa County-specific set of sustainable and green business practices unique to wineries, which uses the Association of Bay Area Governments’ (ABAG) Green Winery checklist as the certification method for NGCW because it is a consistent, credible and recognized program with a long track record.

NGCW, among other criteria, addresses water conservation, energy conservation, pollution prevention, and solid waste reduction elements. Certification through the Napa County Department of Environmental Management (DEM) and the ABAG Green Business program results in a winery becoming a Napa Green Certified Winery. Wineries must maintain regulatory compliance to retain NGCW status and recertification is required every three years.

Creating Industry Momentum Through Shared Resources

In what has become a cornerstone of the Napa Valley Appellation, shared resources will be the defining element of this program and what sets this apart from other regional green initiatives. The NVV will hold regular workshops on current and emerging topics related to sustainability and that support the NGCW program. Workshops will be open to the entire Napa Valley winemaking community. Resource assistance with issues such as greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction, environmentally preferable purchasing, social standards (human resources and employee training), communicating sustainability and more will be offered through the NGCW program. The NGCW Program Resource Center (which will be located on the NVV website at is a shared knowledge network that all Napa Valley wineries can access, contribute to, and use as they make their businesses more sustainable. The site allows for the rapid dissemination of information on the latest technologies and practices. Wineries can use the site to engage in a continuous dialogue that will facilitate shared experiences and program improvement.

The program’s benefits include not only conservation and stewardship of natural resources, but also helps wineries navigate the laws relating to climate protection and emissions reduction, helps consumers recognize businesses that go beyond compliance, provides a solid platform for educating consumers about sustainability and helps wineries realize economic benefits through implementation of green business practices. Ultimately, the certification provides the confidence to know the winery is operating in a highly sound environmentally fashion so as to allow winemakers to focus on innovation and making great Napa Valley wine. There is no fee to participate in the program.

NGCW is the companion program to Napa Green Certified Land which was founded in 2003 and currently has 22,000 acres enrolled in the program. For more information about Napa Green, visit

Why Napa Green is Important to the Wine Industry

The impacts of climate change are generally thought of in three broad categories – increasing temperatures; changing precipitation patterns; and rising sea level. Those three things together will have varying regional impacts around the world. In California we’re already seeing the signs of decreased rainfall, reductions in snow pack in the Sierras, and the likelihood of increasingly intense droughts.

In the not too distant future regular business practices will include knowing your carbon footprint and having a climate action plan. Major retailers are already requesting this information from their vendors. AB32 – the California Global Warming Solutions Act - requires that the California Air Resources Board (CARB) develop regulations and market mechanisms that will reduce California’s greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 (a 25% decrease) and to 80% below 1990 levels by 2050. CARB is in the process of inventorying emissions throughout the state to determine which industries will be subject to mandatory reductions. The wine industry should prepare for emissions reporting and caps.

Businesses who want to take the lead should begin inventorying their carbon emissions, setting reduction targets, and implementing phased plans to achieve those targets. Programs like Napa Green Certified Winery can help.

About the NVV
Now in our seventh decade, the Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) non-profit trade association is the sole organization responsible for promoting and protecting the Napa Valley Appellation as a winegrowing region second to none in the world. Respect for our history reinforces our commitment to the preservation and enhancement of the Valley’s land, wine, and community for future generations. We address the shared interests of our more than 300 member wineries and aspire to be the essential organization for all Napa Valley vintners.

Terry Hall,
Communications Director

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Terry Hall

Contact: Terry Hall, Communications Director 707-968-4217