Greenhouse Cost of Beef

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A study by the National Institute of Livestock and Grassland Science in Tsukuba, Japan, showed that producing a kilogram of beef leads to the emission of greenhouse gases with a warming potential equivalent to 36.4 kilograms of carbon dioxide. That is about the same as driving the average European car for 250 kilometres. The production also consumes enough energy to light a 100-watt bulb for nearly 20 days.

Over two-thirds of the energy goes towards producing and transporting the animals’ feed. The calculations did not include the impact of managing farm infrastructure and transporting the meat, so the total environmental load is higher than the study suggests.

(Animal Science Journal, DOI: 10.1111/j.1740-0929.2007.00457.x).

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