Cows put 11 percent more methane into the air than previously reported

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In the United Kingdom, a study reported global methane emissions from agriculture are larger than estimated due to the previous use of out-of-date data on carbon emissions generated by livestock.

Researchers from the Joint Global Change Research Institute found that global livestock methane emissions for 2011 are 11 percent higher than the estimates based on guidelines provided by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in 2006.

Dr Ghassem Asrar, Director of JGCRI, a co-author of study, said, “Among global regions, there was notable variability in trends in estimated emissions over recent decades. For example, we found that total livestock methane emissions have increased the most in rapidly developing regions of Asia, Latin America and Africa. In contrast, emissions increased less in the US and Canada, and decreased slightly in Western Europe. We found the largest increases in annual emissions to be over the northern tropics, followed by the southern tropics.”