A new report by an international research team explores the impact of the global livestock industry on the environment, the economy and human health.
“The livestock industry is massive and growing,” said Harold A. Mooney, co-editor of the two-volume report, Livestock in a Changing Landscape (Island Press). Mooney is a professor of biology and senior fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment.
“This is the first time that we’ve looked at the social, economic, health and environmental impacts of livestock in an integrated way and presented solutions for reducing the detrimental effects of the industry and enhancing its positive attributes,” he said.
Among the key findings in the report are:
- More than 1.7 billion animals are used in livestock production worldwide and occupy more than one-fourth of the Earth’s land.
- Production of animal feed consumes about one-third of total arable land.
- Livestock production accounts for approximately 40 percent of the global agricultural gross domestic product.
- The livestock sector, including feed production and transport, is responsible for about 18 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions worldwide.
Other editors of the report are Laurie E. Neville (Stanford University), Pierre Gerber (FAO), Jeroen Dijkman (FAO), Shirley Tarawali (ILRI) and Cees de Haan (World Bank).
Read more … (Stanford University)
See Shirley Tarawali’s powerpoint introduction at the book launch early March.