Agriculture is a major cause of global warming. This is the key finding of “Cool Farming” a report published by Greenpeace and authored by Pete Smith, a Nobel Prize winning scientist from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Somewhere around six billion tons of greenhouse gases are emitted by agricultural practices such as over usage of fertilizer, methane from cattle and from fossil fuel burning farm machinery.
To imagine the scale of these emissions, think of a fleet of twelve million Zeppelin airships, each filled with a deadly mixture of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide launched into the atmosphere at a rate of one every two seconds. Each one a disaster of Hindenburg proportions, threatening future generations with climate change, drought and rising sea levels.
Greenpeace does not blame farmers for this situation. Farmers do their best to survive in a difficult market situation. Thats why we need governments to step forward and provide policy that helps farmers reduce their Greenhouse gas emissions instead of subsidizing bad industrial practices that heat our planet and choke our lakes with excess fertilizer.