Biogeosciences Editors' Highlights

What’s the Beef About Methane?

Progress has been made to reduce methane emission intensity from livestock (the amount of methane per unit of protein), but where are the greatest opportunities to reduce this methane source further?

Source: AGU Advances


Methane is the second most important greenhouse gas, and livestock produce one-third of anthropogenic methane emissions. Chang et al. [2021] quantify the potential for mitigating methane emissions through continued improvement in livestock management practices that reduce the amount of methane emitted per kilogram of livestock protein produced. This emphasis on production efficiency is shown to offer the greatest potential to reduce methane emissions as the demand for livestock products grows in a prosperous world. Some of the largest mitigation opportunities are in developing countries where livestock production is expected to grow but efficiencies are currently low.

Citation: Chang, J., Peng, S., Yin, Y., Ciais, P., Havlík, P. & Herrero, M. [2021]. The key role of production efficiency changes in livestock methane emission mitigation. AGU Advances, 2, e2021AV000391.

—Eric Davidson, Editor, AGU Advances

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