Environmental and economic trade-offs of milk production systems
One pathway towards sustainable food systems is to increase agricultural efficiency through changes in production methods. Current systems of milk production are responsible for approximately 2.7% of all anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and can generate nitrogen and phosphorus surpluses which lead to environmental impacts such as water pollution and soil acidification. Dairy systems could contribute towards a circular bioeconomy by yielding nutritious proteins from diets inedible to humans and then returning nutrients to the earth. However, impacts and trade-offs of alternative agricultural regimes need to be understood by including the economic viability of alternative agricultural systems. This work considers how Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and the analysis of trade-offs can be applied to the agricultural sustainability debate with a focus on impacts originating from dairy farming.
Other Titles/Title of Conference
Planetary Health Conference 2018, Edinburgh, UK