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Title: Carbon Footprint of Mediterranean Pasture-Based Native Beef: Effects of Agronomic Practices and Pasture Management under Different Climate Change Scenarios
Authors: Grossi, Giampiero
Vitali, Andrea 
Lacetera, Nicola 
Danieli, Pier Paolo
Bernabucci, Umberto 
Nardone, Alessandro
Journal: ANIMALS 
Issue Date: 2020
A better understanding of soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics is needed when assessing the carbon footprint (CFP) of livestock products and the effectiveness of possible agriculture mitigation strategies. This study aimed (i) to perform a cradle-to-gate CFP of pasture-based beef cattle in a Mediterranean agropastoral system (ii) and to assess the effects on the CFP of alternative tillage, fertilizing, and grazing practices under current (NCC) and future climate change (CC) scenarios. Minimum (Mt) and no-tillage (Nt) practices were compared to current tillage (Ct); a 50% increase (Hf) and decrease (Lf) in fertilization was evaluated against the current (Cf) rate; and rotational grazing (Rg) was evaluated versus the current continuous grazing (Cg) system. The denitrification-decomposition (DNDC) model was run using NCC as well as representative concentration pathways to investigate the effects of farm management practices coupled with future CC scenarios on SOC dynamics, N2O fluxes, and crop yield. Within NCC and CtCf, an emission intensity of 26.9 ± 0.7 kg CO2eq per kg live body weight was estimated. Compared to Ct, the adoption of Mt and Nt reduced the CFP by 20% and 35%, respectively, while NtHf reduced it by 40%. Conservation tillage practices were thus shown to be effective in mitigating greenhouse gas emissions.
ISSN: 2076-2615
DOI: 10.3390/ani10030415
Rights: CC0 1.0 Universal
Appears in Collections:A1. Articolo in rivista

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