Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions in agriculture

From farm production to food consumption

Qian Yue, Xiangrui Xu, Jonathan Hillier, Kun Cheng*, Genxing Pan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture can be mitigated from both supply (production) and demand (consumption) sides. In this study the carbon footprint (CF) of a range of 26 crop and 6 livestock products was calculated using national statistical data and used as an indicator to assess the climatic impacts of agriculture from farm production to food consumption in China. Of the products assessed, meat had the highest CF (6.21 kg CO2-equivalent (CO2-eq)/kg), and vegetable had the lowest (0.15 kg CO2-eq/kg). The CFs of fruit, legume, grain crop, oil crop, milk, industrial crop and poultry egg were 0.31, 0.46, 0.77, 0.95, 1.47, 2.96 and 4.09 kg CO2-eq/kg, respectively. Methane emissions from paddy rice and emissions from fertilizer application were the largest contributors of about 36∼93% of CFs for crop production, whereas GHG emissions from forage, enteric fermentation and manure treatment accounted for more than 96% for CFs of livestock and poultry production. Significant differences between CFs were found across different management patterns and farm scales. GHGs emissions estimated from supply side food production are currently 912.5 kg CO2-eq/capita/year, which was considerably higher than that estimated from consumption being 379.6 kg CO2-eq/capita/year – which may be attributable to export, waste, or to the use of crops as feed for livestock. The CF for dining out was 2.87 kg CO2-eq/capita/meal, which was higher than home dining at 1.57 kg CO2-eq/capita/meal. We conclude that both improved agricultural management and dietary consumption changes have the potential to provide considerable GHG mitigation in China.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1011-1019
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Volume149
Early online date24 Feb 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Apr 2017

Fingerprint

food consumption
Gas emissions
Greenhouse gases
Agriculture
Farms
Crops
greenhouse gas
carbon footprint
farm
agriculture
Carbon footprint
livestock
Poultry
poultry
crop
agricultural management
statistical data
fertilizer application
food production
crop production

Keywords

  • Agriculture
  • Carbon footprint
  • Climate change mitigation
  • Dietary
  • Greenhouse gas

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Strategy and Management
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

Cite this

Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions in agriculture : From farm production to food consumption. / Yue, Qian; Xu, Xiangrui; Hillier, Jonathan; Cheng, Kun; Pan, Genxing.

In: Journal of Cleaner Production, Vol. 149, 15.04.2017, p. 1011-1019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Yue, Qian ; Xu, Xiangrui ; Hillier, Jonathan ; Cheng, Kun ; Pan, Genxing. / Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions in agriculture : From farm production to food consumption. In: Journal of Cleaner Production. 2017 ; Vol. 149. pp. 1011-1019.
@article{72db2d39de8845e88c16d27ec6519171,
title = "Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions in agriculture: From farm production to food consumption",
abstract = "Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture can be mitigated from both supply (production) and demand (consumption) sides. In this study the carbon footprint (CF) of a range of 26 crop and 6 livestock products was calculated using national statistical data and used as an indicator to assess the climatic impacts of agriculture from farm production to food consumption in China. Of the products assessed, meat had the highest CF (6.21 kg CO2-equivalent (CO2-eq)/kg), and vegetable had the lowest (0.15 kg CO2-eq/kg). The CFs of fruit, legume, grain crop, oil crop, milk, industrial crop and poultry egg were 0.31, 0.46, 0.77, 0.95, 1.47, 2.96 and 4.09 kg CO2-eq/kg, respectively. Methane emissions from paddy rice and emissions from fertilizer application were the largest contributors of about 36∼93{\%} of CFs for crop production, whereas GHG emissions from forage, enteric fermentation and manure treatment accounted for more than 96{\%} for CFs of livestock and poultry production. Significant differences between CFs were found across different management patterns and farm scales. GHGs emissions estimated from supply side food production are currently 912.5 kg CO2-eq/capita/year, which was considerably higher than that estimated from consumption being 379.6 kg CO2-eq/capita/year – which may be attributable to export, waste, or to the use of crops as feed for livestock. The CF for dining out was 2.87 kg CO2-eq/capita/meal, which was higher than home dining at 1.57 kg CO2-eq/capita/meal. We conclude that both improved agricultural management and dietary consumption changes have the potential to provide considerable GHG mitigation in China.",
keywords = "Agriculture, Carbon footprint, Climate change mitigation, Dietary, Greenhouse gas",
author = "Qian Yue and Xiangrui Xu and Jonathan Hillier and Kun Cheng and Genxing Pan",
note = "Acknowledgements This work was financially supported by China Natural Science Foundation under a grant number 41501569 and “the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities” under a grant number KYZ201523 and KJQN201673. This work was also supported by Department of Science and Technology of Jiangsu province under a grant number BK20150684 and the Priority Academic Program Development of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions (PAPD). The corresponding author is also grateful to German Research Centre for Geosciences for hosting his research at Helmholtz Centre Potsdam.",
year = "2017",
month = "4",
day = "15",
doi = "10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.02.172",
language = "English",
volume = "149",
pages = "1011--1019",
journal = "Journal of Cleaner Production",
issn = "0959-6526",
publisher = "Elsevier",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions in agriculture

T2 - From farm production to food consumption

AU - Yue, Qian

AU - Xu, Xiangrui

AU - Hillier, Jonathan

AU - Cheng, Kun

AU - Pan, Genxing

N1 - Acknowledgements This work was financially supported by China Natural Science Foundation under a grant number 41501569 and “the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities” under a grant number KYZ201523 and KJQN201673. This work was also supported by Department of Science and Technology of Jiangsu province under a grant number BK20150684 and the Priority Academic Program Development of Jiangsu Higher Education Institutions (PAPD). The corresponding author is also grateful to German Research Centre for Geosciences for hosting his research at Helmholtz Centre Potsdam.

PY - 2017/4/15

Y1 - 2017/4/15

N2 - Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture can be mitigated from both supply (production) and demand (consumption) sides. In this study the carbon footprint (CF) of a range of 26 crop and 6 livestock products was calculated using national statistical data and used as an indicator to assess the climatic impacts of agriculture from farm production to food consumption in China. Of the products assessed, meat had the highest CF (6.21 kg CO2-equivalent (CO2-eq)/kg), and vegetable had the lowest (0.15 kg CO2-eq/kg). The CFs of fruit, legume, grain crop, oil crop, milk, industrial crop and poultry egg were 0.31, 0.46, 0.77, 0.95, 1.47, 2.96 and 4.09 kg CO2-eq/kg, respectively. Methane emissions from paddy rice and emissions from fertilizer application were the largest contributors of about 36∼93% of CFs for crop production, whereas GHG emissions from forage, enteric fermentation and manure treatment accounted for more than 96% for CFs of livestock and poultry production. Significant differences between CFs were found across different management patterns and farm scales. GHGs emissions estimated from supply side food production are currently 912.5 kg CO2-eq/capita/year, which was considerably higher than that estimated from consumption being 379.6 kg CO2-eq/capita/year – which may be attributable to export, waste, or to the use of crops as feed for livestock. The CF for dining out was 2.87 kg CO2-eq/capita/meal, which was higher than home dining at 1.57 kg CO2-eq/capita/meal. We conclude that both improved agricultural management and dietary consumption changes have the potential to provide considerable GHG mitigation in China.

AB - Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture can be mitigated from both supply (production) and demand (consumption) sides. In this study the carbon footprint (CF) of a range of 26 crop and 6 livestock products was calculated using national statistical data and used as an indicator to assess the climatic impacts of agriculture from farm production to food consumption in China. Of the products assessed, meat had the highest CF (6.21 kg CO2-equivalent (CO2-eq)/kg), and vegetable had the lowest (0.15 kg CO2-eq/kg). The CFs of fruit, legume, grain crop, oil crop, milk, industrial crop and poultry egg were 0.31, 0.46, 0.77, 0.95, 1.47, 2.96 and 4.09 kg CO2-eq/kg, respectively. Methane emissions from paddy rice and emissions from fertilizer application were the largest contributors of about 36∼93% of CFs for crop production, whereas GHG emissions from forage, enteric fermentation and manure treatment accounted for more than 96% for CFs of livestock and poultry production. Significant differences between CFs were found across different management patterns and farm scales. GHGs emissions estimated from supply side food production are currently 912.5 kg CO2-eq/capita/year, which was considerably higher than that estimated from consumption being 379.6 kg CO2-eq/capita/year – which may be attributable to export, waste, or to the use of crops as feed for livestock. The CF for dining out was 2.87 kg CO2-eq/capita/meal, which was higher than home dining at 1.57 kg CO2-eq/capita/meal. We conclude that both improved agricultural management and dietary consumption changes have the potential to provide considerable GHG mitigation in China.

KW - Agriculture

KW - Carbon footprint

KW - Climate change mitigation

KW - Dietary

KW - Greenhouse gas

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85015770446&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.02.172

DO - 10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.02.172

M3 - Article

VL - 149

SP - 1011

EP - 1019

JO - Journal of Cleaner Production

JF - Journal of Cleaner Production

SN - 0959-6526

ER -