The GHG emissions generated by the cats and dogs american equivalent of 13.5 million cars

News 5 August, 2017
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    QMI agency

    Saturday, August 5, 2017 12:40

    Saturday, August 5, 2017 12:43

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    LOS ANGELES | cats and dogs who live in the homes of U.s. produce the equivalent of 64 million tonnes of CO2 per year, shows a study published in the scientific journal “PLOS ONE”.

    Gregory S. Okin, department of geography, University of California at Los Angeles, had the idea to calculate the environmental impact of the approximately 77.8 million dogs and 85,6 million domestic cats found in the United States.

    According to his calculations, these animals produce methane and other greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the equivalent of 64 million metric tons of CO2, the amount emitted by more than 13.5 million cars per year, according to the Agency for the protection of the environment in the United States.

    The environmental impact of cats and dogs is also felt in agriculture. By calculating the average consumption of dry kibble in these animals, the researcher came to the conclusion that they consume as much energy as approximately 62 million Americans, or nearly one-fifth of the population of the United States. “The exclusion of animals in the calculation of the food consumption significantly changes the estimates of food energy consumed [in the U.s.],” noted Dr. Okin.

    Although the croquettes intended for animal consumption are often made up of animal by products considered unfit for human consumption, foods high end also use parts of meat more attractive.

    If a quarter of the meat entering the manufacturing of kibble was consumed by humans, it would satisfy the needs of animal protein of 26 million Americans who earn on average 19 % of their energy from meat.

    “This study does not mean that the possession of cats and dogs is expected to decline for environmental reasons,” he wrote. However, “it is clear that a transition to animals eating less meat […] would reduce the u.s. consumption of meat,” he concludes, offering to adopt small rodents rather than large dogs.