Cows and Methane gas article

Discussion in 'Environment' started by RodISHI, Feb 2, 2010.

  1. RodISHI
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    RodISHI Gold Member

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    I came across this article while looking up information about bees and butterflies. I find it interesting.



    http://www.themilkweed.com/

    Click on the "The Methane Digester Scam" at the main page. Sorry not sure why the direct link to the pdf does not work. It is a magazine for dairy farmers.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2010
  2. Mr. H.
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    Mr. H. Diamond Member

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    Bad link?
     
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  3. RodISHI
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    RodISHI Gold Member

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    Fixed I think just get to the main page and click the methane article link.
     
  4. Old Rocks
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    Old Rocks Diamond Member

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    A very good article, I would like to see more like this.

    http://www.themilkweed.com/Methane Digesters - Green or Dirty Brown.pdf

    Here’s my recommendation: extracting from the University of Texas data,
    we glean that each cow on average is responsible for 1,500 lbs of GHG per year.
    We show that in these GHGs, which are from the liquid manure facilities handling
    her waste (as well as from the cow herself), that this gaseous effluent is
    about 2/3 methane and 1/3 carbon dioxide. Since methane is about 21 times as
    potent a GHG as CO2, if that animal’s manure were managed properly as compost,
    then her carbon footprint would be reduced by 93% [100 CO2 versus (66
    x 21 CO2 + 34 CO2)], or about 1,395 pounds CO2 equivalent per year.
    Let’s take this one step further: if the manure from 3.3 million cows (approximately
    4 million animal units) of the country’s combined beef feedlot and dairy
    cows were managed as compost rather than liquid, a great benefit would occur.
    This change alone would achieve the 25% livestock-based GHG reduction (or 2.1
    MMT) proposed by Obama and Vilsack. But let’s be gentle about implementing
    this change: just ask these CAFOs collectively to convert to composting at a rate
    of 330,000 animal units per year over the next 10 years. With any (or lots of) luck
    at some point, could this change result in no more liquid manure?
    This recently-announced GHG abatement program by the federal government
    is patently wrong. Producing methane from livestock manure and then
    burning that methane serves to worsen GHG problems. Carbon dioxide – a bad
    GHG – is a major by-product of methane combustion.

    On the other side of the fence, we find complete ignorance in the environmental
    “logic” and demands by certain urbanites who mistakenly blame livestock
    for one-third of the globe’s GHG problems.
    My contention, after reviewing the facts: livestock manure, when properly
    managed through composting, can dramatically help the U.S. dairy industry
    reduce GHG output and comply with tougher environmental dictates. How we
    handle livestock manure and wastes is the critical issue in whether dairy industry
    practices are environmentally sound … or downright wrong.

    I have to agree with a lot of his contentions in regard to the role played by livestock in the emissions of GHGs. For one thing, there were millions of ruminants a couple of hundred years ago. Buffalo in North America, Wildebeast and others in Africa, that are not there now. And there was no noticeable influence on the atmospheric GHG content of that time.
     

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