The realization that livestock like cows are ruminants – and produce a lot of methane while chewing – was a real boon to vegetarian activists because they got to say curbing meat would mean less global warming.
An estimate by Joint Global Change Research Institute (JGCRI) published in Carbon Balance and Management claims that global livestock methane (CH4) emissions for 2011 are 11% higher than the estimates based on guidelines provided by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in 2006. This makes sense, natural gas is more popular and has kept energy costs low for the poor while lowering the more pressing CO2 concern. Yet they say that is instead due to an 8.4% increase in CH4 from enteric fermentation (digestion) in dairy cows and other cattle and a 36.7% increase in manure management CH4 compared to IPCC-based estimates. Manure methane is due primarily to the popularity of organic food, which has doubled in that time. Not to mention composting, which has always seen a surge in use.
Revised manure management CH4 emissions estimates for 2011 in the US from this study were 71.8% higher than IPPC-based estimates before the organic food and fracking boom.
The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis. Read full, original post: Organic Food Leads To Surge In Manure Methane Emissions