Lower Greenhouse Gas Emissions Possible For Iowa With More Cow Production

By on April 12, 2016

Cows grazing. (Credit: Public Domain)

More cattle production, along with the increases in forage lands that come with it, could lead to lower greenhouse gas emissions for Iowa’s agricultural areas, according to a release from Iowa State University. Scientists there made the find by sifting through peer-reviewed articles on carbon emissions from different land types.

Researchers with the university say that the find means more cattle growing could be brought back to the state to reduce its overall emissions of greenhouse gases. They note that the emissions associated with row-crop cultivation are actually higher than cattle production.

Most of the benefits of expanding cattle production to reduce emissions comes from the growth of forage lands that would support the cows. There are other benefits to more forage lands, including less soil erosion, less runoff and possibly better water quality.

Full results of the effort are published in the Journal of Soil and Water Conservation.

Top image: Cows grazing. (Credit: Public Domain)

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