July 08, 2005

Livestock and greenhouse gases

Crumb Trail explains it:
No CO2 comes from livestock farming. Zero. No methane comes from livestock farming. Zero. CO2 and methane from organic sources result from bacterial and fungal decomposition of vegetation. This will happen whether the veggies are left in fields to rot or consumed by animals.
Go and read the entire post. I would only add that livestock can prosper in lands that are unsuitable for growing crops, so the standard claim that livestock are using up land that we could more efficiently allocate to crops is far too simplistic.

1 comment:

  1. From Poison Darts:

    An estimated 60 million bison once roamed the North American continent. Add to that the number of deer, antelope, moose, and elk, that were also roaming the forests and plains, and you would find that the herbivore and deer population in America was not far off from our current domestic cattle population of about 96 million. We almost drove the bison to extinction and then converted their prairies into farmland. In other words, the resources being consumed by cattle today are roughly the same as that which was consumed by the combined numbers of the American bison and other wild herbivores when they were in their natural state. Much of our food is grown on the prairies that once supported those herds. The planet has long supported vast herds of herbivores, much as the African savanna does today. In the U.S. we have replaced the wild ones with domesticated versions. The problem is that the planet has never supported vast herds of herbivores and primates