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Cow burps are a major contributor to climate change — can scientists change that?

March 6, 2022


Livestock production—primarily cows—produce 14.5 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. The majority of that is in the form of methane, a potent greenhouse gas that is a natural byproduct of how some livestock process food. But as Christopher Booker reports, scientists are hoping that small tweaks in what cows eat can dramatically reduce a big source of climate emissions.

Five Facts

  • Who is working to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases produced by cows?
  • How much methane do cows produce through gas?
  • What are greenhouse gases?
  • Why are greenhouse gases important?
  • What solution is proposed in this piece to reduce methane emissions form cows?

Focus Questions

What are some of the experiments involved in figuring out whether methane from cows can be reduced? Why do you think these experiments are important?

Media literacy: Why do you think the producers focused on this story as a way to show how scientists are trying to counteract climate change?

For More



The United Nations recently released a report on the impact of climate change and greenhouse gases like those made by cow burps. To learn more, watch the following piece:


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