Reducing poultry’s carbon footprint will require new on-farm management practices and technological changes in production and waste management.
The ongoing debate on global warming has left some people convinced that human activity is seriously impacting climate change while others are skeptical and dismissive. Whether global warming is real or imagined, knowing the carbon footprint or energy use of your poultry operation can help you reduce the amount of energy use and improve your bottom line. Human activities, including modern agriculture, contribute to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Only 6.4% of U.S. GHG emissions come from agriculture. Of this 6.4%, beef cattle accounted for about 37%, dairy cattle 11.5%, swine 4.4% and poultry 0.6% (Fig. 1). While the figures for poultry production appear to be low, understanding how these GHG are generated and what we can do to further reduce poultry’s footprint remains important in today’s challenging times.Read more