Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Carbon Hoofprint: Cows Supplemented With RbST Reduce Agriculture's Environmental Impact

Date:
July 1, 2008
Source:
Cornell University
Summary:
Milk goes green: Cows that receive recombinant Bovine Somatotropin make more milk, all the while easing natural resource pressure and substantially reducing environmental impact, according to new study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Giving the biotech product rbST to one million cows would enable the same amount of milk to be produced using 157,000 fewer cows, researchers estimate.
Credit: iStockphoto/Gordon Dixon

Milk goes green: Cows that receive recombinant Bovine Somatotropin (rbST) make more milk, all the while easing natural resource pressure and substantially reducing environmental impact, according to a Cornell University study.

Producing milk uses large quantities of land, energy and feed, but rbST -- the first biotech product used on American farms -- has been in agricultural use for nearly 15 years. Now it is found to reduce the carbon hoofprint by easing energy, land and nutritional inputs necessary to sustain milk production at levels sufficient to meet demand.

This research found that, compared to a non-supplemented population, giving rbST to one million cows would enable the same amount of milk to be produced using 157,000 fewer cows. The nutrient savings would be 491,000 metric tons of corn, 158,000 metric tons of soybeans, and total feedstuffs would be reduced by 2,300,000 metric tons. Producers could reduce cropland use by 219,000 hectares and reduce 2.3 million tons of soil erosion annually.

In 2007, there were 9.2 million cows in the United States. For every one million cows supplemented with rbST, the world would see an environmental saving of 824 million kilograms of carbon dioxide, 41 million kilograms of methane and 96,000 kilograms of nitrous oxide. For every one million cows supplemented with rbST, the reduction in the carbon footprint is equivalent to removing approximately 400,000 family cars from the road or planting 300 million trees.

"Supplementing cows with rbST on an industry-wide scale would improve sustainability and reduce the dairy industry's contribution to water acidification, algal growth, and global warming," says Judith L. Capper, Cornell post-doctoral researcher, and the lead author of the new paper in PNAS.

"Sustainability is important in agricultural production, with an emphasis placed upon meeting human food requirements while mitigating environmental impact," said Dale Bauman, an author of the study. "This study demonstrates that use of rbST markedly improves the efficiency of milk production, mitigates environmental impact including greenhouse gas emissions and reduces natural resource requirements such as fossil fuel, water and land use."

Cornell funded the research.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cornell University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Judith L. Capper, Dale E. Bauman, Euridice Castaneda-Gutierrez, and Roger A. Cady. The Environmental Impact of Recombinant Bovine Somatotropin (rbST) Use in Dairy Production. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, June 30, 2008

Cite This Page:

Cornell University. "Carbon Hoofprint: Cows Supplemented With RbST Reduce Agriculture's Environmental Impact." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 July 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080630173934.htm>.
Cornell University. (2008, July 1). Carbon Hoofprint: Cows Supplemented With RbST Reduce Agriculture's Environmental Impact. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080630173934.htm
Cornell University. "Carbon Hoofprint: Cows Supplemented With RbST Reduce Agriculture's Environmental Impact." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080630173934.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How to Make Single Serving Smoothies: Howdini Hacks

How to Make Single Serving Smoothies: Howdini Hacks

Howdini (July 24, 2014) Smoothies are a great way to get in lots of healthy ingredients, plus they taste great! Howdini has a trick for making the perfect single-size smoothie that will save you time on cleanup too! All you need is a blender and a mason jar. Video provided by Howdini
Powered by NewsLook.com
Boy Attacked by Shark in Florida

Boy Attacked by Shark in Florida

Reuters - US Online Video (July 24, 2014) An 8-year-old boy is bitten in the leg by a shark while vacationing at a Florida beach. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Goma Cheese Brings Whiff of New Hope to DRC

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 24, 2014) The eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo, mainly known for conflict and instability, is an unlikely place for the production of fine cheese. But a farm in the village of Masisi, in North Kivu is slowly transforming perceptions of the area. Known simply as Goma cheese, the Congolese version of Dutch gouda has gained popularity through out the region. Ciara Sutton reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tyrannosaur Pack-Hunting Theory Aided By New Footprints

Tyrannosaur Pack-Hunting Theory Aided By New Footprints

Newsy (July 24, 2014) A new study claims a set of prehistoric T-Rex footprints supports the theory that the giant predators hunted in packs instead of alone. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins