Study shows amount of planet-warming methane from livestock underestimated
Emissions of the greenhouse gas methane from livestock are larger than previously thought, posing an additional challenge in the fight to curb global warming, scientists said Friday.
Revised calculations of methane produced per head of cattle show that global livestock emissions in 2011 were 11 per cent higher than estimates based on data from the UN's Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change.
Periodic reports by the IPCC, drawing from thousands of scientists, help leaders take action on climate change, which has begun to wreak weather havoc around the globe.
"In many regions, livestock numbers are changing, and breeding has resulted in larger animals with higher intakes of food," said Julie Wolf, a researcher in the US Department of Agriculture and lead author of a study in the journal Carbon Balance and Management.