The total carbon dioxide emissions from livestock farming is 7.1 giga-tons per year and it is equivalent to 14.5% of the anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions. (UNFAΟ, carbonbrief.org). 65% of them, come from bovine farming for meat production and milk but also there is contribution from compost production and the use of bovines for work.
• At total the emissions related to livestock operations, fodder production and ruminants’ digestion correspond to 45% and 39% of the total emissions accordingly. The processing and stocking of dung corresponds to 10% and the rest to product transportation.
• The emissions from fossil fuels correspond to 20% for all the actions and species
• The intensity of the emissions differs between commodities. Beef corresponds at approximately 300 kg of carbon dioxide for the production of 1 kilo of protein. Next is the meat and milk of other small ruminants, 165 kg and 125 kg of CO2 accordingly. Cows’ milk and hen byproducts have on average less emission intensity 100kg CO2 per 1 kilo of protein approximately. At each location per country the above numbers differ according to the method and use.
• For ruminant animals the digestion and fodder production for their feed (including the natural decomposition of dung) compose the biggest part of the emissions. For pork production the biggest part of the emissions come from the feed and dung stocking and processing. Likewise, poultry feed constitutes the biggest part of the greenhouse gas emissions along with energy consumption.
• Approximately 44% of the emissions from livestock farming come in the form of methane (CH4). The rest of them are almost equally split between nitrogen oxide (N2O 29%) and carbon dioxide (CO2 27%). In total of the anthropogenic pollutants they constitute:
of carbon dioxide emissions (CO2)
of methane emissions (CH4)
of nitrogen oxide emissions (Ν2Ο)