Domestic livestock plays no significant role in climate changes

Albrecht Glatzle. Domestic Livestock and Its Alleged Role in Climate Change. http://dx.doi.org/10.5772/intechopen.80389

It is very old wisdom that climate dictates farm management strategies. In recent years, however, we are increasingly confronted with claims that agriculture, livestock husbandry, and even food consumption habits are forcing the climate to change. We subjected this worrisome concern expressed by public institutions, the media, policy makers, and even scientists to a rigorous review, cross-checking critical coherence and(in)compatibilities within and between published scientific papers. Our key conclusionis there is no need for anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs), and even less so for livestock-born emissions, to explain climate change. Climate has always been changing, and even the present warming is most likely driven by natural factors. The warming potential of anthropogenic GHG emissions has been exaggerated, and the beneficial impacts of manmade CO2 emissions for nature, agriculture, and global food secu- rity have been systematically suppressed, ignored, or at least downplayed by the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) and other UN (United Nations) agencies.Furthermore, we expose important methodological deficiencies in IPCC and FAO (Food Agriculture Organization) instructions and applications for the quantification of the manmade part of non-CO2-GHG emissions from agro-ecosystems. However, so far, thesefatal errors inexorably propagated through scientific literature. Finally, we could not find a clear domestic livestock fingerprint, neither in the geographical methane distributionnor in the historical evolution of mean atmospheric methane concentration. In conclu-sion, everybody is free to choose a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle, but there is no scientificbasis, whatsoever, for claiming this decision could contribute to save the planet’s climate.

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