Agricultural emissions

Agricultural emissions

Agriculture is responsible for a large fraction of Australia’s anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, with the major greenhouse gases being methane (CH4), predominantly from ruminant livestock, and nitrous oxide (N2O) from fertilised soils. However there are large uncertainties around the quantities of these gases that are released from agricultural sources.

Research into emissions of greenhouse gases from agriculture is essential to quantify the magnitude of the agricultural source to the atmosphere, to ensure the Australian National Greenhouse Gas Inventory (NGGI) correctly reflects the contribution from Australian agriculture and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture.

The Centre for Atmospheric Chemistry is actively involved in research to measure and understand the drivers of these emissions to the atmosphere. CAC has developed techniques to measure CH4 emissions from livestock using open-path FTIR spectroscopy and N2O from cropped soils using chambers linked to a closed-path FTIR gas analyser.

Contacts: Dr Frances Phillips, Travis Naylor

Research Projects

  • Managing and Mitigating methane emission from rangeland cattle in northern Australia – CSIRO Flagship Cluster
  • Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions from poultry production
  • Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions from piggery sheds
  • Best choice of shrub and inter-row species for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and emissions intensity from sheep
  • Measuring Methane emission from grazing ruminant livestock
  • Greenhouse gas emissions from intensive beef manure management
  • Methane emissions from sheep grazing a range of pasture species
  • Greenhouse gas emissions from Australian beef feedlots
  • Methane emissions from beef cattle chosen for high and low net feed intake
  • Methane emissions from steers at three feed intake levels measured using six techniques