Worldwide there is a cattle population of approx. 1 billion animals, which is said to be responsible for almost 10% of the anthropogenic greenhouse gas effect. One of the reasons for this is the assumption that the ruminant stomach of cattle releases methane, which is 23 times more harmful to the climate than CO2.
Converted to the CO2 equivalent used in climate science, this 10% (or 4.574 billion tCO2e) is composed as follows:
CO2 = 2.70 % points,
CH4 = 4.40 % points and
N2O = 2.90 % points.
The Netherlands, with its cattle population of over 5.2 million head, thus accounts for 0.5% (or 24 million tCO2e) of this global climate problem. Disregarding the existing international differences in feeding, an average cow emits approx. 12.5 kg CO2e/day, which corresponds to the emission range of a mid-range passenger car with a daily mileage of approx. 100 km.