RIMPEST- Impact of climate change on insect pests.

Climate change has a variety of effects on agriculture. Due to climate warming, heat-loving (thermophilic) insect pests may increase and lead to increased production risks in agriculture.

To date, no comprehensive study has been conducted for Austria that addresses the expected risks posed by existing insect pests to regional crop production systems under regional climate scenarios. The RIMPEST project therefore addresses the impact of climate change on potential risks from key insect pests for crop production in Austria and seeks associated adaptation options.

Project description

The aim of RIMPEST is to assess the future risks posed by ten important insect pests to the production of major agricultural crops in Austria due to climate change and taking into account the mandatory application of integrated pest management. The insect pests studied include the grape berry moth, the American grapevine cicada (vector of the grapevine flavescence dorée pathogen), two fruit pests (codling moth, plum moth), and six arable and vegetable pests(corn borer, corn weevil, western corn rootworm, wireworms, cotton bollworm, and several nanovirus-transmitted aphid species).

First, relevant data sources with monitoring data on the occurrence of the selected insect pests, phenology of their host plants, qualitative and quantitative damage reports, and climate and weather data will be collected for subsequent analysis and modeling. Subsequently, existing prediction models for the selected insects will be validated and improved for Austrian conditions or new pest models will be developed. Furthermore, trends in pest occurrence for regional crop production systems under the regionalized ÖKS-15 climate scenarios will be analyzed and simulated in case studies. Finally, the project results will be prepared for different user groups and published in a user-oriented way.

Benefit of the project

The results of the project will serve as a basis for more detailed or extended studies on future pest risks of thermophilic insects in Austria to provide adaptation strategies for crop production and crop protection options.

Project details

Project title: Impact of climate change on potential risks of important insect pests for crop production in Austria and related adaptation options.

Project acronym: RIMPEST

Project management: AGES, Univ. Doz. DI Dr. Sylvia Blümel, Institute for Sustainable Plant Production

Project partners: University of Natural Resources and Applied Life Sciences Vienna (BOKU), Institute of Meteorology and Climatology Austrian Chamber of Agriculture (LKÖ) MELES- Consulting Engineers for Biology University of Novi Sad, PFNS-Faculty of Agriculture, Serbia

Funding: Climate and Energy Fund, carried out within the ACRP13 program

Projektlaufzeit: 10/2021-09/2024


Blümel, S. & J. Eitzinger, 2021: Presentation of the ACRP project RIMPEST on the impact of climate change on potential risks of important insect pests for crop production in Austria and related adaptation options. 30.11.2021. Austrian Plant Protection Days 2021, online event: post-event review.

Blümel, S. 2022: Insect pests in the future - The climate fund project RIMPEST. Der Pflanzenarzt 04/2022, p6-8.

Last updated: 04.04.2023

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