Making the World Safe for Cow Farts

We were going to write another deep, probing, iPad-enhanced inquiry into the nature of representative government and the role of responsible citizens in the twenty-first century, but then we came across this…

In the past environmentalists, from Lord Stern to Sir Paul McCartney, have urged people to stop eating meat because the methane produced by cattle causes global warming.

However a new study found that cattle grazed on the grasslands of China actually reduce another greenhouse gas, nitrous oxide.

…and decided to call it a Friday.

Cows absolved of causing global warming with nitrous oxide [Telegraph UK]

I wonder who sponsored it. The Beef industry?

And the article ends with *we don’t really know*.

Sounds like a load of bullshit and tripe to me (mostly from the publisher.)

Klaus Butterbach-Bahl, of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany, carried out the study in Inner Mongolia in China.

What an awesome name. When I grow up I want a name like Klaus Butterbach-Bahl.

@ManchuCandidate: It’s The Telegraph. Of course it’s bullshit. It’s a Tory rag.

If the Earth is naturally producing enough nitrous oxide to keep us all drugged out of our minds and in a permanent state of euphoria then why would we want herds of cows spoiling the fun? Anything good enough to make dental work tolerable is worth inhaling all the time. I say we have the UN declare a worldwide Barbecue Day, slaughter all the grazing animals and turn up the laughing gas.

Ah… I forgot, it was once owned by Fed Prisoner #4344201 aka Fats aka Conrad Black aka ex Lord of Crossharbour.

@Capt Howdy: Tell Lefty to polish up her resume! Hey, maybe we should send in a video application like in Legally Blonde. Does she have a bikini?

Expect all the Trees to start some Pam Karlan v. Kathleen Sullivan nomination war on Le Libre des Facades. Neither will be on the short list.

@Benedick: They’re overplaying it, but the original is being published in Nature. And the authors are very clear that what applies in China may not be the case elsewhere.

But hey: Cow farts. That’s all that’s important.

@nojo: Cow burps are even more dangerous than cow farts, and cow crap is no walk in the park either. If you patronize McDonald’s, take a whiff of these facts.


Ooh, wait. We should send in a tape to Obama a la Legally Blonde for you too. Dodger/Lefty Supreme Court Smackdown! JNOV too. See, that way we’ll get one of you in there for sure!

How do you feel about a Speedo?

@JNOV: Well of course not, because this country isn’t ready for an openly gay Justice. Besides, Sullivan’s making the big coin now that she’s the first woman as a named partner at a BigLaw Noo Yawk firm, and Karlan’s too snarky to survive the confirmation hearings.

@Tommmcatt Loves The Giant Floating Head: No Speedo for me, baby.

If I might just assert my enraged environmentalist credentials here for a moment, who gives a flying fuck about cow farts when the efficiency of energy conversion of feeding grain to cows and feeding cows to humans is something like 1/20th or worse that of just feeding the original grain to humans. Now think of that in terms of the petrochems needed to a) fertilize the grain, b) fuel the tractors and c) fuel the transport of said grain. 1/20th of all that would make a hell of a difference, so don’t tell me cow farts matter. (Note: numbers from memory, allow considerable leeway.)

@IanJ: You’ve also got greenhouse gas issues with everything you mentioned, as well as destruction of native ecosystems (e.g. rainforest) to grow grain to feed cows to feed to fat Americans.

@Dodgerblue: And all the drugs said grain-fed cattle must ingest to be able to digest food it’s not meant to eat — oh, and to keep said cattle alive just long enough to slaughter them. Don’t even get me started on feed lots.

@JNOV: And even for people who don’t eat the drug-laden meat, a lot of the drugs pass through the animals and wind up in feedlot excrement than can get into groundwater and rivers. The industry term for these literal shitpiles is “CAFO” for concentrated animal feedlot operation. Bad news.

@Dodgerblue: Yep. Oh, Food, Inc. is coming on PBS soon. I think it’s still available online at Netflix.

I’m thinking about joining a CSA this year.

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