Are cows the cause of global warming?

A cow does on overage release between 70 and 120 kg of Methane per year. Methane is a greenhouse gas like carbon dioxide (CO2). But the negative effect on the climate of Methane is 23 times higher than the effect of CO2. Therefore the release of about 100 kg Methane per year for each cow is equivalent to about 2’300 kg CO2 per year.

Let’s compare this value of 2’300 kg CO2: The same amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) is generated by burning 1’000 liters of petrol. With a car using 8 liters of petrol per 100 km, you could drive 12’500 km per year (7’800 miles per year).

World-wide, there are about 1.5 billion cows and bulls. All ruminants (animals which regurgitates food and re-chews it) on the world emit about two billion metric tons of CO2-equivalents per year. In addition, clearing of tropical forests and rain forests to get more grazing land and farm land is responsible for an extra 2.8 billion metric tons of CO2 emission per year!

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) agriculture is responsible for 18% of the total release of greenhouse gases world-wide (this is more than the whole transportation sector). Cattle-breeding is taking a major factor for these greenhouse gas emissions according to FAO. Says Henning Steinfeld, Chief of FAO’s Livestock Information and Policy Branch and senior author of the report: "Livestock are one of the most significant contributors to today’s most serious environmental problems. Urgent action is required to remedy the situation."

Livestock now use 30 percent of the earth’s entire land surface, mostly permanent pasture but also including 33 percent of the global arable land used to producing feed for livestock, the report notes. As forests are cleared to create new pastures, it is a major driver of deforestation, especially in Latin America where, for example, some 70 percent of former forests in the Amazon have been turned over to grazing.

 

Are cows to blame for global warming? Are cattle the true cause for climate change?

We cannot deny that farming has a major impact on global warming. Since farming is basically serving the consumer’s demand for food, we should look at our nourishment. With increased prosperity, people are consuming more meat and dairy products every year. Global meat production is projected to more than double from 229 million tonnes in 1999/2001 to 465 million tonnes in 2050, while milk output is set to climb from 580 to 1043 million tonnes.

A Japanese study showed that producing a kilogram of beef leads to the emission of greenhouse gases with a global warming potential equivalent to 36.4 kilograms of carbon dioxide (CO2). It also releases fertilising compounds equivalent to 340 grams of sulphur dioxide and 59 grams of phosphate, and consumes 169 megajoules of energy (Animal Science Journal, DOI: 10.1111/j.1740-0929.2007.00457.x). In other words, a kilogram of beef is responsible for the equivalent of the amount of CO2 emitted by the average European car every 250 kilometres, and burns enough energy to light a 100-watt bulb for nearly 20 days (New Scientist magazine, 18 July 2007, page 15 ).

The following tables indicates the CO2 production in kg CO2 equivalents per kg of meat depending on the animal:

1 kg of meat from
produces kg CO2e
 beef34.6
 lamb17.4
 pork6.35
 chicken4.57

Source: Environmental Impacts on Food Production and Consumption. http://www.defra.gov.uk/science/project_data/DocumentLibrary/EV02007/EV02007_4601_FRP.pdf

 

Conclusion: Eat less meat and dairy products

The most important conclusion for ourselves is: Eat much less meat and dairy products. This is one of the most effective ways to reduce our personal carbon footprint and to generally reduce our personal negative impact on the environment.

Finally a quote from Albert Einstein (Nobel prize 1921): Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.

 

Report from FAO: LIVESTOCK’S LONG SHADOW, environmental issues and options

 

ΞCarbon dioxide | Global warming

157 thoughts on “Are cows the cause of global warming?”

  1. Response
    Okay, good point about the cows and such. But alot of people are noe going to cut down on their meat and dairy intakes. Plus, it is ridiculous to ask people to change their everyday lives like that. Some people cannot afford to eat anything other than cheap meat.
    What really needs to be done, is more public transportation, less cars and gas stations, and people should not leave their computers, lights, cell phones, televisions, radios or anything else on at night when they goto bed. If people will start to do this(which I believe is reasonable to ask of them), then it will dramatically decrease the amount of energy Americans consume annually.

    -TeenActivist

    1. YOu didn’t read the article?
      I’m sorry, but you are incorrect in your statements….
      It’s NOT ridiculous to ask people to change their everyday lives like that… Especially when it could lead to a huge reduction in the Greenhouse gases that can do the most damage to the atmosphere/environment. In Times of war we are asked or even forced to change our way of every day life and that’s not considered ridiculous.

      Although I agree that we should cut down our energy consumption this article just proved that the methane gases produced by livestock and the other gases produced in deforestation for grazing and feeding said livestock can be much more dramatic to the environment and the REDUCTION of theses gases would more greatly reduce and benefit our fight on global warming and the environment.

      Your ability to just write off the main part of this article because you think most people can’t cut back on meat, or that you can’t cut back on meat consumption, is appalling. I am not a vegetarian either, but I have reduced my dairy and Meat intake and also do the things that you suggested as well. You completely missed the point of this article and, sadly like someone of a religious faith, will pick and choose those things that are most Suitable for them and discard all other things and call them extreme or ridiculous. That reminds me of the “good christians” who go to church every sunday and say they are living the way of the bible because they donate money to the church and don’t believe in swearing, but will gamble, mutilate their own body, and have no problem with the death penalty.

      Visit a chicken “factory”(since they aren’t farms) or a pig factory and see what they do there and see if you would even still want to eat meat that has been slaughtered and processed the “Business” way.

      -Activist against Blatant Ignorance

      1. ya
        i agree totally with you. if we change our life styles cause of war, then we should if our world can come to an end. yes, everyone is telling us to cut down on our electric use, but this is what really is effecting our earth. we should pay more attention to what greenhouse gases we are emmiting not just the electricity. same here. im not a vegatarian but i’ve cut back on my meat consumption just because this article made me open my eyes to how bad it really is. im not saying to stop eating meat, just to be more aware and try to cut down. yes i am a christian but i do not go to church every sunday, but i understand catholisim but i also understand that somethings are wrong, and this is you should try ur hardest to cut down on meat consumption please u dont no what it does cause u guys missed so much of the article commenting on how ridiculos it is

        bottom line please try and cut down for our earths sake

      2. Umm.. for the Earth?
        Whatever you are doing will neither help nor harm the earth over the long term. Only species living on earth will be affected, including humans. Earth will abide, and will outlive humanity by a long shot. We are a passing fancy on the timeline of the earth. The arrogance that humans have– that we control the long term fate of the earth itself– is laughable. If you want to save the planet for humans… fine. But don’t pretend that the earth won’t re-make its landscape thousands and millions of times during its existence.

      3. Wow why you got to pick on us Christians
        I totally agree with you. Those Factorys are horible we all should start by having one meatless day a week. That would be huge. Why did you have to bring the christian thing into it. Im catholic and I didnt have to put down your religion. Maybe you should look at some better christians instead of the ones that misrepresent us. Your not very nice mister Ignorance.

      4. Not all Christians follow the book!
        They weren’t putting down your religion. Only making a point that some people say they are something but only choose to follow the parts they want to… as in give money and go on sunday but not ALL the rules. Thats all, no down on your God, just those who pick and choose the rules that are convenient for them.

      5. “no down on your God?”
        Yes I agree with you that it was not intended to put down Christians. But, let us be reminded we only have one God.
        It was just giving a simple example of an attitude of a human. Regardless of what religions we belong. The bottom line is that we are the one who do the actions and decide what we think right and good for us. However, we Christians has this Holy Bible book to guide us what is right and what is wrong in the face of our Creator. Let us face the fact that we people are sinners and we are hard headed individuals that we choose comfort over suffering. The “thinking” of why suffer if we can afford? Why ride a bicycle if you can drive luxury car with AC free from dust. “If” we can only give to our mother earth what is due to her our future generations will enjoy this earth which God created for us to enjoy it, And at the same time our grandsons grandsons will live a better life. “Thanks to our Generations who start saving our mother earth” Lets protect our environment hand in hand regardless of our race, language, and religion. .

      6. don’t ruin the earth
        I’ve just got to say one thing, people should learn to try and not destroy the wonderful earth that god gave us to live on.

      7. Don’t destroy it
        I’ve got to say one thing, people should learn to try and not destroy the wonderful earth that god gave us to live on.

      8. wow all a bit of subject
        Only one god….and mother earth in one statement, who is she his wife? Perhaps sticking to the thread in hand instead of confusing ideas of ancient pagan religion and Christianity might be better.

        Life should be lived lighter not longer!

      9. I bet you say womankind too.
        I bet you say womankind too. Its an expression take off your feminist cap for a moment.

      10. Actually, the usual and
        Actually, the usual and correct expression is grandchildren, not grandsons. Using grandson in this context exudes sexism, ignorance, or both.

      11. Said it for me!
        You took the words right out of my mouth! I understand were she/he was coming from but just under informed or lack of info. And just so you know, cheap meat is way more expensive than vegetables and high protein foods that are offered by the Wick program for under privileged families. They don’t even recommend beef as a protein in diet (the main reason beef is produced).

        I appreciate she/he’s concern and interest in this blog but I feel she/he need to do more research! Education is the key!

        -just someone who wants the world to get better, physically and mentally

      12. hey,
        pal, all we need is PROPER DISCIPLINE, that’s it, don’t argue.

        From:
        I am proud to be Filipino!
        (Gawad Kalinga)Member.

      13. um excuse me? how did the
        um excuse me? how did the “good christians” get into this? you have NO idea what you are talking about.

      14. Rock on! I have been a
        Rock on! I have been a vegetarian now for over a year and will never go back and I hope one day u and the rest will do the same.

      15. same!
        me too, I have been a vegetarian for over a year, I think 2 now, and am happy 🙂

      16. Vegetarians are weak as fuck
        I bet your physique is undesirable, and your health is declining. Lets compare physiques and strength and see why human beings thrived on meat for almost 200,000 years prior to the past 5,000 years of agriculture.

      17. truth
        I am a vegetarian who is on swole. Bench over 300. Over 30 straight pullyps. Beans and rice. Tofu. Nuts. Lentils.
        What up

      18. truth
        Oh ya I’m 180 lbs. Pure muscle!!! You might be swole I’m not denying that but your a fucking idiot!!!!

      19. dork
        I am vegetarian 180lbs. can bench over 300 do 30 plus pull-ups and I’m ripped. Beans,lentils,nuts, and tofu dummy.

      20. I’am agree with you
        I’am agree with you we can decrease meat consumption.. You can’t prove anything if we cut back meat consumption It will reduction in the Greenhouse gases.. suplemen fitness

      21. Bravo!
        Bravo! People can and should cut WAY down on their meat and dairy consumption as a means to a healthful way of life. I don’t eat meat, poultry or fish and I’m the healthiest I’ve ever been at 58.

      1. What will we eat?
        If you are telling people to cut their meat and dairy intake doesn’t that mean that they will eat more vegatables? More vegatables means more land ploughed which we are also told that causes global warming unless you want people to starve. Another thing cattle have been around a long time how come they haven’t caused global warming before now? Don’t forget how heavily populated America was with buffalo in the 1800’s.

      2. CO2 emission of food / meat as cause for global warming

        Your reasoning about vegetables is wrong. It requires much less land to produce enough vegetables to feed a person. Producing meat to feed a person requires much much more land! The table below shows the amount of food required to gain 1 kg additional weight for main species:

        Food conversion for main species

        On the land required to produce 1 kg of meat, about 200 kg of potatoes could be produced! If all Americans would consume only 10% less meat, the amount of economized corn could feed 1 billion people!

        The cattles you mentioned have indeed been around a long time ago. But they were grass fed, sustainably raised in a natural and environmental friendly way. Today’s cattle breeding however is factory farming (feedlots) causing a lot of additional problems (e.g. nitrous oxides from fertilizers, etc).

        There is nothing wrong with naturally grown, grass-fed cattles. But these are very rare species! At least 95% of all meat is produced in feedlots (factory farming).

        But let me repeat again: Much less meat can be produced per square meter land with grass-fed grazing cattles compared to feedlots. So the rich western world need to dramatically cut their meat consumption to make the change back from feedlots into grazing, environmental-friendly and outdoor-living cattles realistic.

        Juerg

      3. Can you explain why the
        Can you explain why the government want cattle numbers reduced in my country even though they are 95% fed on grazed grass and why they say that the land released with the reduction in cattle numbers cannot be ploughed because ploughing land releases C02?

      4. Belching
        They’re working on a way to stop cows producing methane with bacteria identified in kangaroos, what are your thoughts on that?

      5. CO2 emission of food / meat as cause for global warming
        And you fertilize your crops how? You can.t raise decent crops with a decent yield without fertlisers , what about pest and disease control?

      6. grass fed cattle – a rare species?
        95% of meat is produced in feedlots? where? so many generalizations……

      7. gloxbchdn
        YOU SUCK DEEZ NUTS YOU IDIOT!!! YOU ARE TELLING EVERY ONE NOT TO GROW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      8. CO2 emission from raising farm animals for the food industry
        Update on January 2018:
        Worldwide, livestock accounts for 14.5 percent to 18 percent of human-induced greenhouse gas emissions. (Sourc: New York Times, January 25, 2018)

        In other words: the arcticle above about the contribution of cows (or feed breading in general) to global warming is still up-to-date!

      9. Cows
        SORRY I’m going to keep eating what i eat including beef and so are the rest of American’s.

      10. ejerk
        qw cxuihlgetwioh;qij;o32knefndfsdfsdfsndskldsfknasknfakjfeskj;ewfak;efwlodvsijoytghuyjgthmuhyg6tfhbjmnuhygtfbjhugyfcbvhjkuygfcvhbkjugyfchvbnkjhugyfbvhjkuiyfgcvhbn

      11. that is stupid eat less meat
        that is stupid eat less meat and dairy products why not just be a vegan???

      12. misspelt word
        you have put overaged instead of average I have looked overaged up In a dictionary and it is not a word
        thank you

      13. wats up
        so do we just like wipe cattle off the earth or do we keep them in 1 area. or maybe your wrong ever think of that? or maybe were all wrong about the cows. whos to say were not all cows, whos to say were not animals, whos to say were not the problem, there could be something were doing wrong. like people litering, or cars could be the problem why r u blaming cows!!!!!

      14. Vegitarianism
        I belive that you are quite wrong and a little insane you sound like a 13 year old trying to act cool. i am not blameing the cows i blame people. People’s high demand for a stake dinner is causeing the cow produsers to make too many cows. there are far too fast food productions and we should exchange them all for vegan resturants. If the people stop eating cows than there will be less cows. Therefor, the diets people choose effect the atmosphere along with all of the other things that we do.

    2. It’s Not Telling You To Become A Vegetarian.
      Although doing all of those things you mentioned can and will make a difference in the emission of greenhouse gases, it will still not be enough. And it wouldn’t be a HUGE change in peoples’ lives to cut back a little on meat, the article isn’t stating “if you are not a vegetarian Earth is going to be destroyed!” it advises “try to eat less”.

    3. cheap meat?
      Pork and chicken are cheap meat and they do have less of a carbon footprint. While I agree that the other ideas you suggested will work, it is possible to cut down on more energy by eating more of the meats with less of a carbon footprint. Eat less cow and more chicken, duh.

    4. global warming
      yeah, sure turning off lights and stuff like that would help, but it would help even more with the cow thing. and also people dont have to change thier lives like that, but if they want a earth to where you dont have to breath in all that bad pullution and are not in a situation like global warming and really care about the earth and what kind of enviorment they live in which alot of people care about, then im sure they would be willing to change their life style a little bit. and really is that to much to ask for. so choose, live on a crapy earth, or change your life style a little bit, you choose.

    5. turn stuff off
      Why would people leave TV’s, lights and radios on at night in the first place?

      By the way, most people have their computers set up to update, defragment and scan for viruses at night. Good luck keeping that thing running if you turn it off at night and don’t change your settings. And want to buy a new power supply every 1-3 months (turning a computer off and back on is very hard on a power supply, and many of the more powerful ones are $100+, so you would actually lose money if you turned them off every night).

      TV’s and radios would most likely be turned off anyway. Lights…maybe in a different room…? Yeah. Turn those off.

      Though, this guy is correct. And they are working on these things (take a loot at PRT, AKA Private Rapid Transit – it’s pretty awesome).

      1. turn devices off – reduce energy consumption

        Just a quick reply to your comment about power supplies: It is not problem to switch the computer on and off several times per day. The power supplies can easily handle this. 

        PLEASE help saving energy and switch these devices off whenever they are not used. 

         

    6. response to your response
      I can agree with you in the cars and how we need to start car pooling and stuff. This person does make a great point though. We do need to start cuttind down on meat look at what the world is turning into, we are just a ice cube melting and right now it is to the point were animals are dieing too. I am a huge animal lover and know that they are dieing because we can’t cut down on meat that is a little much. You can always go to the grocery store and get some lettuce and make a salad that is a lot cheaper than buying 2 pounds of meat to make burgers. I also love to eat meat but lately I have started to eat a lot more veggies instead of meat. These are just things that we can all do to make our world a better place. Think, we are going to hand this planet of to or children I don’t want to leave them sitting on a little island wishing we did something, because we decided to do nothing about it.

      Sincerely Teen Genius

    7. responce
      well this was interesting point,although we were were not aware about such fact…

    8. Methane: Fuel?
      What would also be a good idea: install collection apparatuses in barns at cow & chicken farms to collect the methane. It’s been proven that methane can be used as a fuel source, so it could potentially replace petroleum. After all, we’re always producing it, so it’s always renewable. The only thing holding such an idea back is the presence of oil lobbyists in congress who’s livelyhood is oil profits, so they’ll oppose it & create speculation doubting its sustainability.

      1. metahn vs carbon dioxide
        Under Kyoto Protocol you could get carbon credits for trapping methane and burning it off (producing CO2 and H2O)
        Methane is regarded as being about 20 times more harmful than CO2.
        You could earn more carbon credits by burning the methane as a fuel and replacing a fossil fuel.

    9. can`t afford to change diet
      that was an excuse i always used and everybody uses,i`m vegan and it`s actually cheaper and way healthier then when i ate meat.everyone wants to change the world but no one wants to change.

    10. i agree with you
      i agree with you that it is ridiculous to ask to change your everyday life. you have a really good point .

    11. Cheaper to eat meat?
      First of all, I’ve been a vegetarian my whole life and have been buying my own groceries for almost 10 years now. For the past year I’ve been living with my meat-eating boyfriend, for which I occasionally buy meat for. I have NEVER spent so much on groceries! Unless you’re going to buy nothing but super cheap ham-hocks for some sort of broth, then meat is FAR more expensive then vegetables!!! I usually get my protein from beans (about $.90/can) or sometimes meat substitutes like morningstar products (around $4 for 4 servings), there are also home made meat substitutes you can make for very inexpensive as well (“wheat-meat”, seitan).
      I’m thinking you should probably do some research before assuming such a thing….

    12. So your suggesting that meat
      So your suggesting that meat is cheap and there’s nothing else to buy that is cheap… ever heard of fruits, vegetables, past, rice, beans, etc? Yes!
      Cheap and healthy, don’t need to be eating/drinking hormones or puss do we!

  2. eat less meat?
    well i kinda found this a bad conclusion, because eating less meat and dairy products wont make a differnece in how many kills are killed, just how many of it is consumed, which wont affect the global warming issue
    so i say, eating less meat wont slow down the process of killing cows, only gets them a little less money

    1. Grazing cattles as solution to global warming?

      Interesting link. However it is important to see the difference between naturally grown, grazing cattles and the current cattle breeding factories. There is simply not enough land available to breed the current number of cattles in an environmentally friendly way.

      Therefore it is inevitable to reduce the average meat consumption in the rich part of the world.

      1. I’m having trouble
        I’m having trouble comprehending the comment structure of this page. Can you tell me which comment are you replying to?

      2. Also if you read the data
        Also if you read the data cereal fed cattle produce less methane. Either way cattle aren’t such a good idea

    2. HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE!
      Cattle releases methane for about 70-120kgs .methane is a greenhouse gas. Cattle also destroys plants and thus contributes global warming.

  3. EAT MORE BEEF! by Jeff Elliott
    Simple solution for those who believe that our bovine friends are guilty. Yes they produce methane gas AND yes methane gas is a so-called greenhouse gas. So if you really believe that killing cows (or) stop breeding cows would contribute to a solution to climate change, then by all means – eat more beef!

    Of course that would create at least two new problems! A new member of endangered species, and no natural fertilizer! So, its back to chemicals to sustain the nutrients needed for your precious veggies.

    Why not COW GAS! Imagine the possibilities for our energy needs! We could create Liquified Cow Gas or (LCG) as a whole new industry! WOW! More cows = more beef and more fuel. How’s that for a scientific solution!

    1. Wrong By Puma Eviline
      you humans are the problem. Produsers of beef will try to make as much beef as the public demans, and therefor there will always be an influx of cows. and the more cows that are eaten, the more cows that will be bred. I am not saying kill the cows, just stop eating them so that the manufactures stop breeding them. And if you find a way to bottle that methane gas and use it as energy, tell someone. untill then, your still a nobody with rediculous ideas.

      1. You’re Wrong.
        This is a good idea, but you spelt the following fords incorrectly:
        Producers
        Demands
        Therefore
        Manufacturers
        And if you say this is ‘rediculous’, At least if someone saw this, they would get that I meant ridiculous.
        I HATE PEOPLE WHO CAN’T SPELL

      2. You spelled ‘word’ wrong. You
        You spelled ‘word’ wrong. You have other errors as well.

    2. butterfly effect
      First off, half of the comments on this page are spelled incorrectly. If you want your ideas to be considered by others, spell correctly! Jeff Elliott … I love your comment! But, to everyone…We need to consider the Butterfly Effect. Like Elliott said, if we eat more beef..we get rid of all the cattle. If we quit eating beef and the factories quit producing it, then there will be no need to raise cattle anymore. Either way, we are creating a way to drive all the cattle off the earth. Way to go guys..another animal extinction…..Not so much what we were aiming for. Why don’t we just focus on slowing the global warming process, instead of stopping it. This is a more achieveable goal that everyone can be apart of.

      1. not really buterfly person
        not really would they become extinct. instead, there would just be less. which also helps with the rainforests. with less cattle less trees are cut down for farms. toldya!!!

  4. cows are one of the causes of global warming
    cows are most definatly one of the causes of global warming because the have more methane in their farts they help with destroying the ozone layer, and they also help killing the plants so that we arent the only cause of global warming so we the people cant be the only ones to blame because all of the animals help pollute the air also. and what i can do to help the enviornment is to eat less meat and start a farm of some sort so that we can all help the enviornment in some way so that we can all have more time to live instead of just killing everything more and more every day.

    kaitlin 6th

  5. i think thats true about
    i think thats true about cows that they have some effect on globel warming but we are effecting the world the most because we are making gas cars then electric cars that could help globel warming

    1. answer from my soul
      I eat meat from when I was bourne,I still eaten but I always feel it was wrong! for respect of all us and mother nature u provide for all our soul to interact togetether tru uman body, we ave responsability to keep the best equilibrium between our living and respect for what make this possible,other plausible view of this is: We live and share the present in this life but the are no future in this life becouse future is intended in our next new bourne and we don’t know where or when will happen but will happen and again and again in our bless mam earth.I BELIVE IN ALL OF US,CHANGE OUR PRESENT TO AVE A BETTER FUTURE .CIAO TO EVERYONE

  6. Other reasons not to eat beef
    There are other reasons not to eat beef besides reducing greenhouse gases. Cows are non-sustainable sources of protein because of the amount of grain/feed it takes to feed these animals. the amount for one cow/year is enough to feed almost 100 children in africa! if you choose to eat beef, purchase grass fed. It is more expensive but the taste is better. Also, whoever said that going vegan is worse, without cows and other lifestock animals most of the land used JUST for the growing of animal feed can be adapted to human use. And simple idea: have your own veggie garden! Overall, Cows are just not sustainable creatures… you can always put one in ur backyard, slaughter and freeze. science lesson.

  7. global warming? how much we care?
    Global warming is a very sensitive issue that we must not ignore. We can’t blame cows or those farms for this phenomenon. All human is responsible for these. Everyday, each person contributes largely to the global warming unconsciously. Riding a car, or throwing a piece of plastic or paper. Many companies are promoting eco-friendly products like natural spices, biodegradable plastics, electric cars like
    peapod car
    and the likes. But what really is the real probability that these acts can really contribute to prevent global warming. Further studies is needed to understand carefully the real aspects in this phenomenon.

    1. Don’t confuse issues
      Why do people keep saying that there are other causes of global warming so we can’t blame cattle farming. I think everyone understands that cows are not the only cause of global warming, this doesn’t make the issue of how we produce meat any less or more important.

      1. Diet for a small planet
        The UN recommends a vegan diet to help protect our planet. There is overwhelming evidence that meat is NOT good for us or the planet. People like to eat it and therefore will continue to eat it, but it would be good if those who can’t give it up could at least reduce their consumption. Meat is also not good for our health. Also, think of the animals and their right to life. This is a multifaceted subject. From any angle it is wise to stop breeding and killing animals for food and turn to a plant based diet. It is perhaps a little more challenging at first but a lot more interesting and flavoursome in the long run! It’s not that hard — try a tasty vegetarian Indian curry and see how your tastebuds react!

      2. Reply to all
        Once cows milk is hard to produce and cows give more blood than milk will be the day we all end! Abuse to the cow Is abuse to your mother! I gave up meat along time ago. Not for religion nor for global warming I gave it up for morals. Today I’ve read this article and it’s no surprise at all! It’s such a shame we humans learn too late. It’s such a shame we use our minds and not our intelligence. When a child looks at a fire he or she is thrilled by it because it’s looks appealing but the child follows it’s mind but once it touches the fire it gains intelligence, shame we will burn before we use our intelligence even though we are given a second chance, so by reading this article use your intelligence and stop your childish mind from being Mis-led. Your iq level is very low! Take Alberts advice.

        V

      3. AGREEMENT!!
        I totally agree with you. Saying what they say is like saying that cattle is a big problem in global warming so you can’t blame overusing fossil fuels. It’s rediculous!!

        ~☆♪☻TK☻♪☆~

    2. Further studies so the
      Further studies so the scientists promoting this hoax can keep getting paid.

    3. You forgot to mention that
      You forgot to mention that METHANE HAS A VERY SHORT “HALF LIFE” IN THE UPPER ATMOSPHERE. CO2 ON THE OTHER HAND IS QUITE LONNNGGG INTERMS OF ITS HALF LIFE

  8. Carbon Consumption?
    This article shows how much carbon is produced per Kg of meat, but does this itake into account how much carbon is consumed by the animal? I am interested to know how much carbon is consumed per Kg of meat through the consumption of grass and grain.

    I would have thought it would be a mostly closed system (carbon is added due to transport and processing), where the growing of the grain/grass absorbs carbon, the animal eats this then excretes carbon (minus what it absorbs into its body), which can then be absorbed by the grain/grass and so on.

    I have searched for answers to this on the online (which is what brought me to this site), but have not been able to find it.

  9. Karma
    Humans will pay one way or another(but not with money) for the price of dairy and meat. Its cruel. Animals are beings too. Humans put animals through so much pain just to eat them and also ruin our earth in the process.

  10. Answer for carbon consumption
    People have been burning down nearly all our rain forests in the world to make room to put grass down for cows which are then killed to make burgers. rain forests absorb heaps of carbon. Its not proven that grass or grain fields absorb any, if so it would be such tiny amounts compared to beautiful rain forests.

  11. Stop
    Honestly, everyone has their own opinions. so stop getting down eachothers throats. because your not going to change their opinions, it just makes YOU look ignorant.

    read the article and keep your comments to yourself.

    mmmm yeah BYE!

  12. well i think this is a good
    well i think this is a good site because i have to do a school project on this except its kinda boring but overall i love this website. i give this 5 stars

  13. Global Warming
    Interesting to me is all this talk back and forth about eating meat or not eating meat. By far the biggest contributor to global warming (and virtually all other planet earth problems) is the overpopulation of the human species. Unless or until we are willing to confront this fact on a global scale we are doomed. Not the planet, just the human species. If we were to stop eating meat or even stop using internal combustion engines it would just be delaying the inevitable.
    But as usual folks would rather talk about controlling the cattle population than the human population.

  14. harmony
    it saddens me that people bicker and fight over this…………… i am praying for the day when you and i and he and she are a we. one day humanity will sing harmony.

  15. That stupid because you get
    That stupid because you get less meat from a chicken that you wold from a beef. So if you eat chicken you need to raise more chickens to get the same amount of meat from the beef

  16. CO2
    Plants use CO2 !!! There are almost 7 Billions humans on the earth and we fart CO2 and methane ……better start killing humans also
    to save the earth of course 🙂 3

  17. Why Just Cows?
    So if people stop eating cow and start eating wild buffalo, do we have a wild buffalo problem?

  18. Wat a big deal
    Its not really a big deal, we will probably all die from it but a least it will end the dread of life

  19. urgent
    Can i have the name of the author? im writing a report on this and plan on using this as a resource.

  20. Typo
    Typo in the first sentence makes the article less credible.

    You should also reword the sentence. “On average, a cow releases between…..”

  21. Spelling
    You put in the first sentence that “A cow does on overage” instead of on average.

  22. Rice too
    rice production produces 500 million tons of methane, thats about 1kg of methane per kg of rice, so rice produces almost the same amount as cows per kg

  23. (…)
    “According to the Food

    (…)
    “According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)-Animal- agriculture is responsible for 18% of the total release of greenhouse gases world-wide (this is more than the whole transportation sector). (…)

  24. According to the Food an
    According to the Food an Agriculture Organization of the United Nations “Animall agriculture is responsible for 51% of 5he total release of greenhouse gases world-wide ( this is more than the whole transportation sistem worldwide

  25. compared to rice?
    at 70kg of methane per cow, it seems that the world’s cow population creates less methane than the world’s rice crop. Conclusion: Eat less rice.

  26. Are Cows the Cause of Global Warming

    One has to agree that sustainable regenerative grazing will probably result in less meat consumption. But, grazing in a sustainable manner like the huge migrating herds of bison, aurochs and antelope that created the deep carbon rich soils of the world’s grasslands/breadbaskets such as the north american prairies and plains can sequester vast quantities of carbon up to 3,000 tons of carbon per acre.

    When managed intensively, the “standard grazing unit”, a 1000 pound cow can capture and store the equivalent of 3 tons of CO2 per year, three times as much as the equivalent methane she produces.

    One must remember that the biological decomposition of plants produces methane, whether that decomposition takes place in a herbivore’s gut, in the soil in in water (remember swamp gas is methane). I have not seen anything showing that cattle increase the total methane emitted by the same quantity of plants in the soil or in a compost pile. An additional factor promoting grazing is the nature of grasslands. Grasslands and hoofed herbivores including ruminants evolved together. As a result grasslands have to be cut/trimmed to stay healthy. In humid areas such as Illinois or Iowa, the land turns into scrubland, which sequesters little carbon. In semi-arid areas such found west of 98th meridian such as New Mexico, the land turns into desert, highly erodible and subject to oxidation of the any organic material in the soil. Ruminants are nature’s chosen trimmers. Their sharp cloven hooves are highly effective in trampling vegetation creating an armor protecting the soil from desiccation, wind and water erosion and promoting water infiltration.

    Finally, the only way that much of our land especially in the west is only suitable for grazing. That acreage will only increase as aquifers are depleted by excessive pumping.

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