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2011 (Vol. 3, Issue: 1)
Article Information:

Global Climate Change: Role of Livestock

S.M.K. Naqvi and V. Sejian
Corresponding Author:  Dr. Veerasamy Sejian 

Key words:  GHGs, Global warming, methane, mitigation, ruminants, ,
Vol. 3 , (1): 19-25
Submitted Accepted Published
2010 October, 05 2010 October, 27 2011 January, 10

Climate change is seen as a major threat to the survival of many species, ecosystems and the sustainability of livestock production systems in many parts of the world. Green house gases (GHG) are released in the atmosphere both by natural sources and anthropogenic (human related) activities. An attempt has been made in this article to understand the contribution of ruminant livestock to climate change and to identify the mitigation strategies to reduce enteric methane emission in livestock. The GHG emissions from the agriculture sector account for about 25.5% of total global radiative forcing and over 60% of anthropogenic sources. Animal husbandry accounts for 18% of GHG emissions that cause global warming. Reducing the increase of GHG emissions from agriculture, especially livestock production should therefore be a top priority, because it could curb warming fairly rapidly. Among the GHGs, CH4 is considered to be the largest potential contributor to the global warming phenomenon. Ruminant livestock such as cattle, buffalo, sheep and goats contributes the major proportion of total agricultural emission of methane. Indian livestock system is a large contributor to GHGs and therefore also to the global warming phenomenon. Methane emission from enteric fermentation from Indian livestock ranged from 7.26 to 10.4 MT/year. In India more than 90% of the total methane emission from enteric fermentation is being contributed by the large ruminants (cattle and buffalo) and rest from small ruminants and others. Generally CH4 reduction strategies can be grouped under two broad categories such as management and nutritional strategies. Although the reduction in GHG emissions from livestock industries are seen as high priorities, strategies for reducing emissions should not reduce the economic viability of enterprises if they are to find industry acceptability.
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  Cite this Reference:
S.M.K. Naqvi and V. Sejian, 2011. Global Climate Change: Role of Livestock.  Asian Journal of Agricultural Sciences, 3(1): 19-25.
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ISSN (Online):  2041-3890
ISSN (Print):   2041-3882
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