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Open AccessArticle

Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Beef Grazing Systems in Semi-Arid Rangelands of Central Argentina

1
Instituto Nacional de Tecnología Agropecuaria (INTA), Estación Experimental Agropecuaria Catamarca, Ruta 33 Km 4 (4705), Sumalao, 4705 Catamarca, Argentina
2
Departamento de Ciencias Agrarias y del Medio Natural, Facultad de Veterinaria, Universidad de Zaragoza, Miguel Servet 177, 50013 Zaragoza, Spain
3
Instituto Agroalimentario de Aragón -IA2- (CITA-Universidad de Zaragoza), 50013 Zaragoza, Spain
4
Departamento de Ciencias Agropecuarias, Facultad de Ingeniería y Ciencias Agropecuarias, Universidad Nacional de San Luis, Av. 25 de Mayo 384, Villa Mercedes, 5730 San Luis, Argentina
5
Departamento de Ciencias Agrarias y del Medio Natural, Escuela Politécnica Superior, Universidad de Zaragoza, Carretera de Cuarte s/n, 22071 Huesca, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2018, 10(11), 4228; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10114228
Received: 30 September 2018 / Revised: 11 November 2018 / Accepted: 12 November 2018 / Published: 16 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmentally Sustainable Livestock Production)
The livestock sector can be a major contributor to the mitigation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Within the sector, beef production produces the largest proportion of the livestock sector’s direct emissions. The objective of this study was to assess the on-farm GHG emissions in semi-arid rangelands in Argentina and to identify the relationship between emissions and current farm management practices. A survey recorded detailed information on farm management and characteristics. Assessments of GHG emissions were based on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Tier 2 protocols. The relationship between farm management and GHG emissions were identified using general linear models. Cluster analysis was used to identify groups of farms that differed from others in emissions and farm characteristics. Emissions per product sold were low on farms that had improved livestock care management, rotational grazing, received technical advice, and had high animal and land productivities. Emissions per hectare of farmland were low on farms that had low stocking rates, a low number of grazing paddocks, little or no land dedicated to improved pastures and forage crops, and low land productivity. Our results suggest that the implementation of realistic, relatively easy-to-adopt farming management practices has considerable potential for mitigating the GHG emissions in the semi-arid rangelands of central Argentina. View Full-Text
Keywords: livestock care management; rotational/continuous grazing; technical advice; stocking rate; functional units livestock care management; rotational/continuous grazing; technical advice; stocking rate; functional units
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Nieto, M.I.; Barrantes, O.; Privitello, L.; Reiné, R. Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Beef Grazing Systems in Semi-Arid Rangelands of Central Argentina. Sustainability 2018, 10, 4228.

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