Vermont cows must fart 50% less by 2030, climate council learns

By Rob Roper

At the Oct. 5 meeting of the Vermont Climate Council, paid consultant David Hill provided a sector-by-sector rundown of what and where emissions must come if the state is to avoid a self-invited lawsuit for failing to meet its self-inflicted emissions reduction targets.

Saving the planet may require significant reductions in “enteric fermentation,” the scientific term for cow burps and gas releases, environmentalists say.

When the subject turned to the agriculture sector, Hill informed the council that 70% of agriculture GHG emissions comes form “enteric fermentation,” which is the politely scientific term for cow burps and gas releases from the other end of the animals. This, Hill proclaimed, must be reduced by just under 50% by the year 2030.

Anson Tebbetts asked the obvious question you the reader are probably asking yourself: “What exactly are you asking farmers to do” in order to achieve this?

Hill responded with a cloud of non-specific jargon, the gist of which was “we so-called experts who have no experience in farming have seen studies that say this can be done, so just do it.” Tebbetts politely thanked him for the non-answer.

Abbie Corse, who represents the farming community on the council, was less accepting of the ironically BS spewing from the consultant:

I don’t believe from my own research and expertise and my experience feeding seaweed, for example, and doing other emissions enteric fermentation reduction methodologies on my farm for the last decade that there is enough research or data so far in that regard to say that that is a feasible path forward for farmers at this juncture. … In addition, the fact that anaerobic digestion is another one of the only ways that theoretically we are saying we can reduce agricultural emissions, which is a methodology only available to large farms who potentially have the capital investment of 1 to 3 million dollars, which is certainly not available to a small or medium sized farmer such as myself. So, as we’re thinking about equity and the people who actually have to do this work on the ground every day, I’m going to try to encourage us to think about what these numbers on the screen actually mean for people on the ground and how we’re going to answer their questions as to how they’re supposed to move forward in a viable and equitable way.

Yes, that would be nice. But, like pretty much every proposal of this council, it’s not likely to happen. And if it does, the consequences could be terrible.

Another council member, Chris Campany, pointed out later that the only realistic way to reduce the amount of enteric fermentation by the amounts prescribed is to eliminate the animal population itself. This realistically means fewer Vermont farms, and less need for open pasture land — something Vermonters say they value for the aesthetic they create. Campany relayed that, in his experience, when such land loses its cows, the animals are replaced in the landscape by development. “I can pretty much tell you what’s gonna replace the cows, and it’s not gonna be trees,” he said.

But, of this last prediction I doubt Campany will be proven correct. The council will simply ban development on formerly utilized pasture lands, sticking former farmers with property they can’t use and can’t sell, but of course will continue to have to pay property taxes on. Good times!

Rob Roper is president of the Ethan Allen Institute. Reprinted with permission from the Ethan Allen Institute Blog.

22 thoughts on “Vermont cows must fart 50% less by 2030, climate council learns

  1. Open the article URL to see the other URLs.

    COMPARISON OF EMISSIONS OF COWS AND LIGHT DUTY VEHICLES (car, SUV, minivan, ¼-ton pick-up)
    https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/emissions-of-cows-versus-light-duty-vehicles-car-suv-minivan-ton

    In this article it is shown, the direct emissions of methane and CO2 of the world’s 3.6 billion ruminants is 6.939 billion metric ton of CO2 equivalent per year, and of the world’s 1.0 billion light duty vehicles is 4.830 billion Mt CO2 eq./y; ruminant emissions are about 43.7% greater than LDVs.

    Additional ruminant related emissions are due to pasturing, feeding, processing, packaging, selling, etc. of meat and dairy products. For example, in the US, the life cycle CO2 eq. emission for some products are as shown below:

    World CO2 Equivalent Emissions: The EPA and IPCC determined the emissions of agriculture, forestry and other land use were 12.648 billion Mt of CO2 eq. in 2014, or about 24% of the world’s manmade CO2 eq. emissions. Biological sources such as cattle, landfills and agriculture account for up to 67 percent of total human-caused methane emissions. See below table and URLs.

    World Population: Some biologists/ecologists, such as E.O. Wilson, have been warming us for decades, but we are too busy to be listening. The above comparison of LDV to ruminant emissions is a consequence of the world’s population being in out-of-control growth mode for at least 200 years. That growth and the abundant availability of fossil fuels since 1800, have greatly increased electricity and heat generation, agriculture, industry, transportation, etc., which in turn increased the world’s CO2 equivalent emissions.

    E.O. Wilson: “Half for Nature”

    Since 1800, CO2 and methane emissions have increased from:

    – The human population and its support systems. See below table.
    – Domestic animals; cows, sheep, goats, pigs, chickens, pets, etc.
    – Rats, cockroaches, potato blight funguses, etc., which depend for their existence on mankind and its support systems.

    There is no solution to this trend, except to very significantly reduce the world’s population and have the remaining people reduce their energy consumption per capita by at least 4 times (the level of 1800) and consumption of other resources per capita by at least 15 times (the level of 1800). This should not significantly affect living standards, because, at present, energy and other resources are used much more efficiently than in 1800.

    Those measures would enable maintaining 50% – 80% of the world in pristine condition, so the world’s fauna and flora could re-establish itself to a semblance of its former glory. The present, locust-type devouring of the world by humans, their animals and other support systems, is a major aberration, and clearly should not continue. Europe and Japan have near zero population growth. They could have steady negative growth without much effort. The rest of the world should follow that example, and it should have been part of the Paris accords to get China, India, etc., on board. Here is a US Army bison skull pile, due to Army kills and bounty hunter kills. Looks like a holocaust to me. See below table.

    • After giving this some thought, someone can invent a fart retrieval system to attache to the cows. They can sell the farts to gag shops for Xmas. So instead of selling maple syrup you can sell farts in a can.

      • I’m working on one now for Joe Biden voters that has a hose that attaches to the three masks their wearing. Face Shield also will be available. Then they might believe the
        SCIENCE that if you can smell a fart thru a mask you can get covid.

  2. The Climate Council’s recommendations are farts in the wind. Perhaps if they all stood in unison in front of a wind turbine, they could try with all their might to generate enough hind wind to turn those blades and power their phone chargers!

  3. If this was a joke, it would make people smile. That its a real demand tells us that these people are nuts and need to be locking up and treated, and probably kept under constant adult supervision.

  4. That sounds like a breeze to enforce. A team of 6 figure a year cow fart smellers are needed at the expense of the Vermont tax payer. Woops, the cow fart smeller just fell into the manure pit and we tried to help him out with a club.

  5. The entire Climate Council process has become ridiculous, embarrassing, useless, economically wasteful and painfully stupid…….What kind of a Frankenstein has the Vermont Legislature created?

    The consultant in this case, David Hill, paid with hard working Vermont tax payer dollars to tell the Climate Council that cows must reduce emitting gases by 50% by 2030……..Can anyone please tell us if they have ever heard such a ridiculous, embarrassing, useless, economically wasteful and painfully stupid piece of advice in their entire life……..Advice that the Climate Council sat obediently and quietly listened to.

  6. My suggestion is to have the climate weenies follow the cows around the pasture with a bic lighter and when the cows fart light the methane coming out the butt so
    it don’t pollute the fragile atmosphere… hopefully the farts have a few
    sharts along with them…we could tape it for utube to offset what they want to charge
    us in warmongering tax

  7. This commentary is witty and hilarious, oh my God, lol…….it’s why the left can’t meme. They are gonna censor this one for sure. This would be a wonderful interview topics to ask our politicians in Montpelier for commentary on the citizen feed back.

    Genius pure genius. You guys are awesome.

  8. I read with considerable amusement the foregoing article by Rob Roper assessing the overwhelming problem with bovine enteric fermentation and its effect on the burgeoning effects of global warming. He described rather well the dilemma facing the climate crocks in solving this problem. I have a couple of suggestions I hope are helpful:

    Invent a device similar to a catalytic converter, strap it to the back of an offending cow, in the appropriate place, of course; then, within the converter devise a fan powered by the methane itself that would blow the noxious fumes through a series of perfume saturated membranes that would then eliminate…. Oh damn, you get the idea.

    The perfect person to implement this: AOC, the ultimate authority on the passage of the gassy whiffs. Phil Scott could hire her for a million a year and turn her loose on the handful of farms that are left. End of problem.

    The next problem would be the 7 billion humans on earth that eat beans. The solution to this is still on the drawing board. Stay tuned, Folks. It only gets better.

  9. Climate change is as big a greenwash as the plandemic…and all under the same aegis: total control, surveillance state, and captured resources = hostage humanity.
    If we just stop meddling with Mother Earth, if we just did the unimaginable, and just…stopped…now…forever…we would see improvements in just months, and in a year or two, the planet would be well on the way to healing back to her balanced self.

  10. I believe that the cows in question would qualify for multiple religious exemptions. There are the MOO-nees, The MOOve-on MOOvement, and let us not forget the church of Gary Larsen and the teachings of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

    It would be racist to claim not to understand the ways cows communicate. Any farmer can tell by inflection of a moo whether a cow is hungry or in some distress. What has not yet been deciphered are their prayers to the cow who jumped over the moon, which seem to come in the form of various belches and farts.

    Wolves get away with howling at the moon, and the practice is even mentioned in literature in a fond manner. Is a cow somehow supposed to be a less worthy life form, simply because the means of expression it uses is not in the polite vocabulary of those space cadets who think Ben and Jerry make a certain flavor of nutty ice cream using recycled doobies and the uneaten cherries from cocktails???

    I was once told that the sound of freedom was F-4s flying over my house at 4AM on training runs. No. The real sound of freedom is a cow able to practice her religion in a meaningful manner, with a resounding “Braaap… plop… plop…” and a swish of the tail.

  11. This whole subject is so freaking embarrassingly absurd that I cant believe these freaks actually believe this BS!.. The problem is that they’re convincing our kids that this crap is actually a threat. We need to vote out every liberal idiot that runs for any office anywhere..PERIOD!

  12. So I have lived in Vermont for just over seventy years, and I remember when Vermont use to
    have ” thousands ” of dairy farms. Today 2021 we have a few hundred farms , and this paid
    consultant is telling me that these modern-day cows are ” farting ” more than the cows of the
    past causing all these issues ??

    This sounds a little like whoever requested this report, is getting the answer they were looking
    for in order to eliminate Vermont’s dairy business for an agenda…….

    I believe that this consultant was in the wrong barnyard, if he was looking for real toxic Flatus
    just hang around Capitol in Montpelier !!

    Wake up people, they don’t care about you or the state, it’s all about their agenda , vote these
    clowns out before they kill the state and our way of life, “jeesh” carpetbaggers in charge ….sad.

  13. Rob, Thank you so much! I am still laughing. Great choice of words describing the ridiculousness of the Climate committee. And love the look on the cows face! You must have search far and wide to get a picture to match the occasion.

  14. So, Mr. Paid Consultant gives a ridiculous accounting of cow flatulence and it’s dire impact on Vermont’s greenhouse gas emissions? And the solution is eliminate 1/2 of the cows in Vermont?
    I’m waiting breathlessly for that piece of legislation to emerge from committee in a few months, as I doubt the high and mighty “Climate Council” will touch the third rail that is Vermont agriculture.
    And the Council should not. Put it to the legislature, those elitist buffoons that created this mess to begin with. Make the legislature be accountable for the cesspool they created in their worship at the altar of climate change. For those that need to worship climate change, The Vermont Department of Taxes will accept your tithings, the legislature will bestow their blessings on you. For the rest of us environmental heathens- It’d be best to vote carefully November 8th, 2022.

  15. Well, the Council has been putting on airs, so it’s about time they got wind of the news and realize they’re on the horns of a dilemma of their own making.

  16. There are studies disproving the idiocy of saying cow farts are causing significant global warming . What it really is about is the hidden agenda to for e us to stop eating meat and using dairy, so they can feed us the solient green fake meet made from chemicals.

    Here’s a thought let’s use nice non-carbon electricity source like a nuke plant, oh wait we closed that and screwed southeastern Vermont even more.

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