Monday, July 9, 2007

Burp less to fight global warming

Seems to be true for cows, atleast. This Reuters article suggests that the bovine belch can generate an average of 100-200 litres of methane a day! Staggering, to say the least. Given that methane is almost 25 times as potent a global warmer as carbon dioxide, reducing methane emissions could bring down global warming significantly.

Researchers are now frantically trying to find new plant-based diets for these cows so as to make them belch less. Usually, a poorer quality diet results in significantly more methane gas. It could be because cattle feed, these days, is less chewy, and cows are not able to break it down well before it reaches the stomach. This leads to incomplete processing, and therefore, more methane, which comes out in the belch.

On the positive side of things this emission of fuel may fuel better regulations on what these animals will be fed.

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