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Sun Nov 10, 2013, 11:17 AM

N. Japan Cherry Arborists Preparing To Move North To Hokkaido To Keep Up With Warming

FURANO, Hokkaido—A fruit seedling sales company in Higashine, Yamagata Prefecture, which is a major cherry production center, is exploring a new cherry production area in Furano, Hokkaido, in line with expected temperature rises due to global warming.

International discussions are scheduled at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP19) to be held in Warsaw from Monday to discuss measures to counteract global warming. According to a study recently released by scientists, the average global temperature at the end of this century is expected to rise by up to 4.8 C, and production centers of agricultural products in Japan will likely change drastically with the temperature change.

Yamagata Prefecture, whose cherry production accounts for about 70 percent of the national production, is suffering from increasing temperatures in recent years.

According to the Yamagata Local Meteorological Observatory, the average temperature of the prefecture rose by about 1.2 C over the past 100 years. Climate change has affected its cherry production. If higher temperatures continue into the early summer, the quality of cherries will be reduced, with pale skin or shriveling from a lack of water, according to experts.



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