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Not a joke: California to actually begin regulating cow farts

Climate change

(NaturalNews) Cow manure is producing too much methane, according to the California Legislature, which seeks to substantially reduce what it considers climate change emissions over the next decade and a half. Officials recently approved regulations on "cow flatulence and manure," both of which supposedly contribute to greenhouse gas releases.

The bill's author, Democratic Senator Ricardo Lara of Bell Gardens, approved the measure recently and agreed to give dairy farms more time to comply. Regulators hope to reduce methane emissions to 40 percent below 2013-levels by the year 2030, reports CBS News.

The measure also aims to "significantly increase" composting in order to reduce the dumping of food waste in local landfills, which officials say releases methane gases upon breakdown.

Factory farming, as well as the commercial food sector, are among the most harmful industries when it comes to the environment, sustainability and public health.

Why factory farming is one of the most environmentally-devastating industrial practices

While the evidence connecting man-made greenhouse gases to global warming is weak at best, there's no debating the fact that Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) contribute to greenhouse gas emissions – and the practice carries many implications.

An estimated "65 billion animals worldwide, including cows, chickens and pigs, are crammed into CAFOs. These animals are literally imprisoned and tortured in unhealthy, unsanitary and unconscionably cruel conditions," according to EcoWatch.

"Sickness is the norm for animals who are confined rather than pastured, and who eat GMO corn and soybeans, rather than grass and forage as nature intended. To prevent the inevitable spread of disease from stress, overcrowding and lack of vitamin D, animals are fed a steady diet of antibiotics."

Factory farming releases large amounts of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, more so than the entire global transportation industry. Furthermore, CAFOs create severe air pollution. In fact, testing conducted at factory farms found the air to be dirtier than in America's most polluted cities.

But is regulating cow farts really the answer? No, the answer is to eliminate factory farming. Unfortunately, California is big on "regulating" things and less big on actually solving problems.

Experts admit they are unsure of how to actually regulate cow flatulence

ABC News reports that experts aren't even sure if the technology exists to reduce cow flatulence. Yet the legislature approved a $900 million spending bill that, among other things, seeks to regular cow farts.

Lawmakers agreed "to spend nearly two-thirds of the available money generated by the state's cap on carbon pollution under a deal between the Democratic governor and top Democratic legislative leaders."

"The deal includes $363 million for clean vehicle incentives and hundreds of millions for urban plants and efforts to create cleaner air in disadvantaged communities. It also includes $50 million to reduce emissions of methane and other climate-changing gases associated with dairy production and another $40 million for landfills," according to reports.

The measure was passed just weeks after Democrats voted to extend California's "landmark climate change law" for another 10 years. Some call the climate change law the most aggressive in the nation.

Those in opposition to it include Big Oil and Republicans, the latter of which describe the program as an illegal tax.

In order for the legislation to become law, it will have to be approved by Democratic Governor Jerry Brown.






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