Are livestock destroying the planet?


Livestock are essential to rural economies and livelihoods across Africa. On Zimbabweland there have been many blogs on this theme focusing on Zimbabwe’s livestock and marketing systems. But are these animals contributing to planetary destruction through greenhouse gas emissions?

A special issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Scienceson livestock and global change late last year offered some new data, and generated a minor storm of controversy thanks in large part to the Economist weighing into the debate. The Economists’ summary of a paper by Mario Herrero from CSIRO in Australia and colleagues from IIASA and ILRI suggested that the solution to the high climate change impacts of traditional livestock rearing was to abandon free range pastoralism and shift to a form of intensive factory farming. The answer The Economist believes is “intensive livestock farming, which is more efficient and environmentally friendlier than small-scale, traditional pastoralism of…

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“Wisdom belongs to the older generation, passion, creativity and action belongs to the younger generation, and this is a total team.” (Mandivamba Rukuni, PhD)

The Principle of Team Work, Traditional Afrikan Leadership Principle 9 in: The Wisdom to Lead (2013)