The UK Government plans to mandate the use of “methane suppressants” in compound feeds for cattle to reduce emissions from cows and other farm animals, as part of its Net Zero Growth plan.
Cows and other farm animals are estimated to produce about 14% of the total carbon dioxide emissions created by human activity worldwide.
Methane, which is released when cows belch or break wind, is one of the most potent greenhouse gases, warming the planet 25 times more effectively than carbon dioxide.
The government aims to explore the use of methane suppressants for dairy farms and mandate their use in England as soon as feasible, with high efficacy products expected to enter the UK market by 2025.
The UK has committed to the Global Methane Pledge to reduce emissions by 30% by 2030.
In the Net Zero Growth plan, the government stated: “We will publish a government response to our call for evidence exploring the role of robust monitoring, reporting and verification of greenhouse gas emissions on farms.”
It added: “We anticipate entry of high efficacy methane suppressing products to the UK market from 2025 and will explore the role of industry and government to maximise uptake of such products for suitable cattle farm systems at pace, through a phased approach.
“This will include the ambition to mandate the introduction of products with proven safety and efficacy in compound feeds for cattle as soon as practically possible in England.”