Livestock greenhouse gases reduction in the Andean Region
Improvements in dual-purpose dairy herds feeding (i.e., supplementation or use of preserved forage), animal genetic, irrigation, and pasture management led to lesser greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions in Bolivia was reduced, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru
Context of the story
This project aimed to improve methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions quantification techniques. Furthermore, it intended to generate strategies to help mitigate these emissions in dual-purpose livestock in the Andean Region.
Strategies to mitigate GHG emission
The implemented initiative
This project was structured in five components. The first one consisted of biophysical and socioeconomic characterization of dairy production sites. In a second one, methane and nitrous oxide emissions were evaluated in production systems (traditional and improved). The third one evaluated feeding strategies to enhance milk production systems and to reduce their emissions. Followed by the development of gas mitigation scenarios for pilot sites. Finally, improvements in research capacities in methane and nitrous oxide and contribution to public policies.
Feeding impact on GHG emission
The technological solution
Livestock feeding improvements such as non-structural carbohydrates reductions and/or higher dietary protein resulted in greater 1.34 liters of milk per day and 34% lesser methane emissions per liter of milk.
Improved systems had greater milk yield per lactation (2,369 vs. 1,990 kg/lactation) and lower cost of production (0.29 vs. 0.21 $/kg) compared to the traditional ones. Furthermore, methane emission per liter of milk was lower in improved systems than in traditional systems (29 vs. 44 g methane/kg of milk). Hence, feed with lower structural carbohydrates and greater crude protein contents helped to reduce enteric fermentation and enhance milk production.