New science and research has San Joaquin Valley farmers taking a harder look at the effect that climate change may have on their industry.

If researchers' predictions hold true, the Valley's multi-billion dollar agriculture industry will be hit with longer stretches of hot temperatures, fewer colder days and shrinking water supplies.

What that means for agriculture is potentially lower yields, a loss of revenue and fewer acres being farmed.

Farmers and industry leaders say that while there is still skepticism among their ranks, they are doing what they can to stay ahead of the issue, including educating themselves, testing new fruit varieties or investing in water-saving technologies.

"You know, this is sort of like Y2K," said Joel Nelsen, president of the Exeter-based California Citrus Mutual trade group in reference to the year 2000 computer scare. "You better figure out if it is going to affect you or not and what are the possible scenarios."

Compiled by Staff Writer Robert Digitale from staff and wire reports. Submit items to robert.digitale@pressdemocrat.com.

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