Cow Fart Myths Pt 2

Cow Fart Myths Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
I’m Bob Larson. Dairy and beef cattle are continually on the defensive about their contribution to climate change through the methane they produce, not through farts, but, as we learned yesterday, through their burps.

Professor Frank Mitloehner, air quality specialist at the UC-Davis Department of Animal Sciences, says a second myth is that the current methods of assessing global warming are accurate, but the CO2 equivalencies just aren’t there …

MITLOEHNER … “Power production, transportation, and so on, emissions are always new and additive carbon to the atmosphere. Livestock emissions are not. They are recycling carbon from the atmosphere to plants, to animals, and back to the atmosphere.”

Mitloehner says current methods over-state methane’s warming potential …

MITLOEHNER … “Yeah, methane has a lifespan of 10-years. CO2 has a lifespan of 1,000 years. So, methane that’s into the atmosphere is not just produced, it’s also destroyed. And that’s why the lifespan of methane is only 10-years.”

So, Mitloehner says without getting too deep into the weeds …

MITLOEHNER … “I know that’s probably too much technical information for you, but it’s important to understand methane from livestock is not just produced, it’s also destroyed at almost the same rate. And this is something that is not currently being appreciated in public policy or in the public discussion of livestock’s impact on the environment.”

Listen tomorrow as Mitloehner tackles myth number 3, that growing demand means an increase in the number of beef and dairy cattle.

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