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MEAT AND THE PLANET:Livestock are responsible for about 18 percent of the global warming effect
ncpa.org ^ | December 28, 2006

Posted on 12/28/2006 12:26:53 PM PST by InvisibleChurch

As the human population continues to multiply -- and our biological footprint on the planet becomes larger -- so do all the things associated with us, including our livestock, says the New York Times.

For example, according to a new report by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations:

At present, there are about 1.5 billion cattle and domestic buffalo and about 1.7 billion sheep and goats in the world. Global livestock grazing and feed production use 30 percent of the land surface of the planet. Livestock -- which consume more food than they yield -- also compete directly with humans for water. But what is even more striking, and alarming, are their effects on the environment:

Livestock are responsible for about 18 percent of the global warming effect, more than transportation's contribution. The culprits are methane -- the natural result of bovine digestion -- and the nitrogen emitted by manure. Deforestation adds to the effect; the drive to expand grazing land destroys more biologically sensitive terrain, rain forests especially, than anything else. There are no easy trade-offs when it comes to global warming -- such as cutting back on cattle to make room for cars, says the Times. The human passion for meat is certainly not about to end anytime soon. Our health and the health of the planet depend on pushing livestock production in more sustainable directions.

Source: Editorial, "Meat and the Planet," New York Times, December 27, 2006.

For text:

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/12/27/opinion/27wed4.html

For full report:

http://www.virtualcentre.org/en/library/key_pub/longshad/A0701E00.pdf

For more on Environment Issues:

http://www.ncpa.org/sub/dpd/index.php?Article_Category=31


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: eatingmeat; globalwarming; greenieweenies; itswhatsfordinner; junkscience; nannystate; un; unitednations; vegans
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To: ConservaTexan
Same goes for my medium-rare rib eye!

Not to mention my medium-rare New York Strip!

51 posted on 12/28/2006 12:58:21 PM PST by Doomonyou (I voted and all I got was a FUBAR Congress.)
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To: InvisibleChurch

Something to really look forward to!

52 posted on 12/28/2006 1:00:15 PM PST by Cementjungle
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To: Red Badger
They want us all to become VEGANS!.............I KNEW THERE WAS A CONSPIRACY!!!!.......

They're a bunch of commie-pinko-tofu eating bastards!

53 posted on 12/28/2006 1:00:18 PM PST by Doomonyou (I voted and all I got was a FUBAR Congress.)
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To: Red Badger
They want us all to become VEGANS!.............I KNEW THERE WAS A CONSPIRACY!!!!.......

If we all become vegans, human methane output will offset the reduction from the livestock.

We're doomed either way, so I'd rather eat steak. Where's my ribeye?

54 posted on 12/28/2006 1:01:08 PM PST by The_Victor (If all I want is a warm feeling, I should just wet my pants.)
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To: wbill

yah,30acres oot of 100 are inhabited by domestic farm animals....you wouldn't be able to sleep for all the moo-ing and bah-ing.


55 posted on 12/28/2006 1:05:12 PM PST by Minnesoootan
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To: traditional1

Bush's fault!


56 posted on 12/28/2006 1:16:35 PM PST by southernerwithanattitude ({new and improved redneck})
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To: InvisibleChurch
Anyone know how many bizillion wild herbivores there were 30,000 years ago? What about just American bison?

What is the contribution of whales, elephants, and panda bears?

What a load of crap ;-)
57 posted on 12/28/2006 1:17:17 PM PST by SampleMan (Islamic tolerance is practiced by killing you last.)
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To: InvisibleChurch
Livestock are responsible for about 18 percent of the global warming effect

This assumes that someone actually knows whether natural global climate change is warming or cooling. However, if we accept that assumption it is then fair, and also logical, to request a listing of all other things that are responsible. This logical request is based on another assumption; the assumption that the total must be known in order to know what makes up 18% of that total.

58 posted on 12/28/2006 1:21:23 PM PST by MosesKnows
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To: B4Ranch
REVENGE OF THE RUMINANTS!!!
59 posted on 12/28/2006 1:22:58 PM PST by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: NGC 6822

Slower, and better mannered, for the most part.


60 posted on 12/28/2006 1:24:25 PM PST by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: InvisibleChurch
The human passion for meat is certainly not about to end anytime soon. Our health and the health of the planet depend on pushing livestock production in more sustainable directions.

.eat TOFU or we are doomed.

61 posted on 12/28/2006 1:25:00 PM PST by Donald Rumsfeld Fan ("Fake but Accurate": NY Times)
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To: CDHart

And CO2; especially after they've fallen and begun to decompose.


62 posted on 12/28/2006 1:25:59 PM PST by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: InvisibleChurch
At present, there are about 1.5 billion cattle and domestic buffalo and about 1.7 billion sheep and goats in the world.

The 2002 census of cattle and calves in the U.S. was 95,497,994. That isn't much higher than the estimated number of buffalo (60-80 million) that inhabited the plains of North America before the evil white man wiped them out. Buffalo are generally bigger than cattle, eat more and, naturally, fart more. So there is no significant net difference in ruminant produced methane. I expect the same could be said for Africa where fantastically large herds of animals roamed a century or two ago. If anything today's domestic livestock are a good deal fewer in number than the wild herds of old.

63 posted on 12/28/2006 1:26:26 PM PST by TigersEye (Ego chatters endlessly on. Mind speaks in great silence.)
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To: InvisibleChurch

It's all those Mustangs, Pintos along with the Tauruii, not to menation the bears who cr@p in the woods and those devilish moose turds!


64 posted on 12/28/2006 1:26:49 PM PST by Young Werther
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To: TigersEye

The methane comes mainly from the burps; farts are more likely to be hydrogen sulfide.


65 posted on 12/28/2006 1:28:13 PM PST by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: All

66 posted on 12/28/2006 1:28:51 PM PST by Beowulf
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To: Young Werther

Those moose turds are especially evil.


67 posted on 12/28/2006 1:30:53 PM PST by Donald Rumsfeld Fan ("Fake but Accurate": NY Times)
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To: clamper1797
And how much carbon dioxide is generated by the planets plant life.

Plants consume CO2 and give off O2. Animals consume O2 and give off CO2.

The real question is how much CO2 is created in the production of carbonated soft drinks and why haven't the Enviro Wackos marched on the headquarters of Coca Cola and Pepsi corps?

68 posted on 12/28/2006 1:30:59 PM PST by TigersEye (Ego chatters endlessly on. Mind speaks in great silence.)
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To: Old Professer

Does it ever scare you, Professor, that you know that?


69 posted on 12/28/2006 1:31:19 PM PST by Mr. Lucky
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To: Mr. Lucky

No more than knowing my aglet from my anklet.


70 posted on 12/28/2006 1:33:21 PM PST by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: InvisibleChurch

I ran the numbers and the besI could come up with was 8%.

I think they failed to include an allowance for herd animal decline on the North American plains and African plains. This decline reduces the number by 8.3%.

It also appears that they miscalculated the effect of kelp flowers and krill. Taken together thay make up the difference.

All in all, I think they did pretty shoddy work.


71 posted on 12/28/2006 1:34:37 PM PST by bert (K.E. N.P. .... you'll run the bill up kid!....)
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To: Donald Rumsfeld Fan

While stationed in Alaska I found some jewelry in the BX that was fashioned from Moose Turds! Goggle moose turds and you'll find my story from an earlier FreeRepublic post!


72 posted on 12/28/2006 1:35:02 PM PST by Young Werther
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To: southernerwithanattitude

73 posted on 12/28/2006 1:35:14 PM PST by traditional1
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To: InvisibleChurch
Livestock are responsible for about 18 percent of the global warming effect

And politicians are responsible for the rest.
74 posted on 12/28/2006 1:36:23 PM PST by Beckwith (The dhimmicrats and liberal media have chosen sides and they've sided with the Jihadists.)
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To: Old Professer

You really have an anklet?


75 posted on 12/28/2006 1:39:05 PM PST by Mr. Lucky
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To: Old Professer
The methane comes mainly from the burps; farts are more likely to be hydrogen sulfide.

Errr, is hydrogen sulfide flammable? Because if it isn't I can Google up some strange pics to argue the point with you. ;^)

76 posted on 12/28/2006 1:40:07 PM PST by TigersEye (Ego chatters endlessly on. Mind speaks in great silence.)
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To: InvisibleChurch

Maybe we should start by killing off all the animals that don't help to sustain human life. (e.g. pandas, koalas, manatees, squirrels and other wildlife.)

It's hard to imagine that domestiaced animals are farting more than wild ones.


77 posted on 12/28/2006 1:42:14 PM PST by Atlas Sneezed (Your FRiendly FReeper Patent Attorney)
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To: TigersEye
Cattle are ruminants and, as such, produce methane in their digestive process. The methane is expelled as a burp, not a fart. While this simple fact may not be known to the New York Times, it's hardly a secret. Google on something to the effect of "cow burps".
78 posted on 12/28/2006 1:46:02 PM PST by Mr. Lucky
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To: TigersEye

Very.

BTW, the smell gives it away, rotten eggs, methane is pretty much odorless.

The natural gas you have in your house averages about 80-85% methane in most of the country and the gas company adds an odorant to allow a leak to be readily detected.


79 posted on 12/28/2006 1:50:33 PM PST by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: InvisibleChurch

As long as they arent fried in trans-fat.


80 posted on 12/28/2006 1:53:16 PM PST by sgtbono2002 (The fourth estate is a fifth column.)
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To: InvisibleChurch

The Sun is responsible for 100% of global warming.


81 posted on 12/28/2006 1:55:50 PM PST by 3niner (War is one game where the home team always loses.)
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To: CDHart
"I believe plants give off oxygen."

Depends. During the day when the plant if in the photosynthetic mode, it takes in CO2 and exhales Oxygen. At night the process reverses and the plants respirate.

82 posted on 12/28/2006 1:56:51 PM PST by Jimmy Valentine (DemocRATS - when they speak, they lie; when they are silent, they are stealing the American Dream)
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To: All
US EPA Methane Sources and Emissions
(I was going to post the table on this page but I can't do it.)

Looks like the U.S. is steadily reducing methane emissions. Apparently wetlands are responsible for 76% of all naturally produced methane. Sorry, duck hunters, for the good of the chirren we gotta dredge and drain.

83 posted on 12/28/2006 1:59:11 PM PST by TigersEye (Ego chatters endlessly on. Mind speaks in great silence.)
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To: Old Professer
Alrighty then. No bizarre pics for you!
84 posted on 12/28/2006 2:00:49 PM PST by TigersEye (Ego chatters endlessly on. Mind speaks in great silence.)
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To: InvisibleChurch

Good thing we wiped out all the buffalo on the great plains. Imagine the warming carnage that would have ensued without our intervention.


85 posted on 12/28/2006 2:02:53 PM PST by Rippin
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To: Mr. Lucky
I'll take your (and Old Professor's) word for it.

To get back to the point of it; is there more domestic livestock than there used to be herds of wild ruminants? Do wild ruminants belch less?

86 posted on 12/28/2006 2:04:18 PM PST by TigersEye (Ego chatters endlessly on. Mind speaks in great silence.)
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To: TigersEye

The volume, frequency and duration of burps is determined by the feedstock and the size of the stock feeding.


87 posted on 12/28/2006 2:08:39 PM PST by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: Jimmy Valentine

No plant can grow unless it is a net consumer of CO2. Plants use Solar energy (through photosynthesis) to crack CO2. They incorporate the carbon into the plant material, and release most of the O2.

Animals get carbon, for growth, by eating plants (or things that eat plants). They also get energy by burning most of the hydrocarbons that they eat.

In other words, both plants and animals grow by taking in carbon (and many other elements). Plants use Solar energy to run the endothermic reaction when they break CO2 into C and O2. Animals run on chemical energy, combining C with O2, which is an exothermic reaction.


88 posted on 12/28/2006 2:10:36 PM PST by 3niner (War is one game where the home team always loses.)
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To: 3niner

10-4!


89 posted on 12/28/2006 2:12:12 PM PST by Jimmy Valentine (DemocRATS - when they speak, they lie; when they are silent, they are stealing the American Dream)
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To: InvisibleChurch

Maybe we could put Beano in their feed.


90 posted on 12/28/2006 2:16:27 PM PST by Daveinyork
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To: TigersEye
Plants consume CO2 and give off O2. Animals consume O2 and give off CO2.

OOPS ... you're right ... and I should have and actually did know better. I guess I should have had that first cup of coffee before posting.

91 posted on 12/28/2006 2:17:44 PM PST by clamper1797 (Kerry does support the troops ... just not ours)
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To: TigersEye
I dunno, it would seem to me that the expression phrase "buffalo breath" must have some basis in fact.

In any event, because these animals are ruminants, they are able to digest plants which humans cannot.

92 posted on 12/28/2006 2:33:04 PM PST by Mr. Lucky
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To: InvisibleChurch

I can see the headline: "UN demands global vegetarianism."


93 posted on 12/28/2006 2:52:10 PM PST by Right Wing Assault ("..this administration is planning a 'Right Wing Assault' on values and ideals.." - John Kerry)
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To: RightResponse
Vegans smell funny without farting...

They are still kinda hot.

94 posted on 12/28/2006 2:58:49 PM PST by Oztrich Boy (South Park Liberal)
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To: InvisibleChurch
Flash News Item: Livestock are responsible for about 18 percent of the global warming effect...


"Cows are all t'way up at 18 percent!?? Well dadgum, Slim, ah'm goin' to do sumptin' bout that!"

95 posted on 12/28/2006 3:15:32 PM PST by Gritty (Thank you, Al Gore, for being our Noah! - Oprah Winfrey)
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To: Oztrich Boy

Bullseye! That's exactly what I think of, whenever I see/hear the term "vegan", too. :-)


96 posted on 12/28/2006 3:20:33 PM PST by 3niner (War is one game where the home team always loses.)
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To: InvisibleChurch; cogitator; DaveLoneRanger

British researchers have apparently come up with a cattle feed that lowers bovine methane emissions by about 80 percent. Now, pass the A-1 sauce, please...


97 posted on 12/28/2006 4:20:39 PM PST by Tolerance Sucks Rocks (Dont overestimate the decency of the human race. H. L. Mencken)
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To: Shermy

Break out the smoker and place bacon on top to prevent drying.


98 posted on 12/28/2006 4:30:12 PM PST by MaxMax (God Bless America)
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To: clamper1797
I guess I should have had that first cup of coffee before posting.

Wellll, OK. I just hope you can account for how much methane was released in order to provide you that cup of coffee. /s

99 posted on 12/28/2006 6:04:11 PM PST by TigersEye (Ego chatters endlessly on. Mind speaks in great silence.)
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To: Mr. Lucky
In any event, because these animals are ruminants, they are able to digest plants which humans cannot.

Which is one of the main reasons (though far from the only one) I will continue to BBQ beef or buffalo for dinner and go lightly on the prairie grass.

100 posted on 12/28/2006 6:07:41 PM PST by TigersEye (Ego chatters endlessly on. Mind speaks in great silence.)
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