Although integral to many farming systems, livestock production is nevertheless associated with many impacts that are deemed socially undesirable. Whereas animal welfare concerns have been documented for centuries, damage attributed to and responsibility for greenhouse gas emissions are more recent concerns. Key questions relate to our understanding of emissions from alternative farming systems, different methods of counting these emissions, and policy options for their reduction. This paper considers these issues as a basis for informing a discussion about both the scientifi c and policy priorities in the area. Although there are signifi cant uncertainties, we argue that the science is suffi ciently clear for a coherent policy response focusing on both producers and consumers.
- Global climate change
- Greenhouse gas emissions
- Life cycle analysis
- Production versus consumption accounting