As pointed out by the European Environment Agency In a recent review, dairy cows emit three times more methane than dairy cows. However, methane’s warming potential is stronger than that of CO2 in the short term, but methane remains in the atmosphere for about 12 years, compared to CO2’s hundred years.
So, to the expert, reducing herds seems like a good solution in the short run, but less so in the long run. “On the other hand, if we take the example of a car, all the CO2 it emits will be in the atmosphere in 500 years”He explains.
Besides the simple reduction of the herd, the professor also advocates other solutions for agriculture that are more respectful of the environment. “We can work on animal efficiency and produce more milk with fewer animals, or ensure that animals produce the same amount of milk but emit less methane. We can do this by changing their diet: feed and cellulose. It creates a chemical reaction inside it that emits methane. If we act on the parameters and feed the animals more concentrated food, we can emit less methane”.
According to the European Environment Agency, 6.3% of greenhouse gases across Europe in 2020 came from agriculture. Compared to 1990 levels, the decline of methane emissions in Europe continued: one of the sectors where this reduction was most significant was agriculture (-21%). However, on a global scale, IPCC reports show that Methane concentrations have increased and their effect on global warming is stronger than that of CO2.
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