Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 410093
Title Productivity gains and greenhouse gas emissions intensity in dairy systems
Author(s) Gerber, P.; Vellinga, Th.V.; Opio, C.; Steinfeld, H.
Source Livestock Science 139 (2011)1-2. - ISSN 1871-1413 - p. 100 - 108.
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.livsci.2011.03.012
Department(s) Livestock Research
LR - Backoffice
WIAS
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2011
Keyword(s) organic milk-production - life-cycle assessment - environmental-impact - farm
Abstract This paper explores the relationship between productivity of dairy production and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions on a global scale. A Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology was used to assess GHG emissions from dairy production and processing chains. Milk yield expressed as kg fat and protein corrected milk (FPCM) per animal was chosen as a proxy for system productivity. On a per cow basis, GHG emissions increase with higher yields. However, GHG emissions per kg FPCM decline substantially as animal productivity increases. The contribution of different gases to total GHG emissions of dairy production systems vary; methane and nitrous oxide emissions decrease with increasing productivity, while carbon dioxide emissions increase, but on a lower scale. Productivity increase therefore offers not only a pathway to satisfying increasing demand for milk but also a viable mitigation approach, especially in areas where milk yields are currently below 2000kg/cow and year.
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