Study: U.S. dairy accounts for 2% of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions
U.S. dairy accounts for approximately 2% of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, according to a study completed in July by the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy. The study marked the first, national life-cycle assessment, or carbon footprint, study of fluid milk. The study is the first significant step in a comprehensive science-based effort to demonstrate the sustainability of U.S. dairy products to consumers, retailers, and government, said officials with the Innovation Center for U.S. dairy.
Paul Martin, WUD’s director of environmental services said, “This is good news because it provides an accurate baseline measure of U.S. dairy emissions and helps correct misinformation about U.S. dairy’s carbon footprint.” The Fluid Milk Carbon Footprint Study also identifies opportunities to further reduce greenhouse gas emissions at and beyond the farm gate. It finds that management practices make a significant difference in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The study provides a scientific foundation for dairy businesses along the entire dairy value chain to make independent decisions about management practices that are both economically and environmentally feasible. To help companies do this, the Innovation Center has 10 greenhouse gas reduction projects under way that target feed production, processing, packaging and transportation.
For more information about the Fluid Milk Carbon Footprint Study and the Innovation Center’s greenhouse gas reduction projects, visit www.usdairy.com/sustainability. The Fluid Milk Carbon Footprint Study will be presented on September 22 at the International Life Cycle Assessment Conference in Italy. Detailed findings will be peer-reviewed and published in academic journals in 2011.