Thursday, February 08, 2007

Fart taxes

According to the Times of India

‘A recent FAO report entitled 'Livestock's long shadow', stating that the world's 1,530 million cattle contribute more to global warming than its 900 million cars and commercial vehicles, came as a shock to many. The UK was reported to be seriously debating a 'fart tax' on all cattle and sheep to try to reduce their numbers. In 2003, New Zealand had proposed a similar NZ$10 tax per animal that had been bitterly opposed by their huge farming community.’

The ‘fart tax’ proposal was of particular interest to India because it has 18% of the world’s cattle. While this account is humorous to those who find flatulence humorous, the FAO report does show that it is both industry and agriculture that are contributing to global environmental issues such as global heating. This has important agricultural policy implications.


Damien Eldridge said...

Harry, you might find the following paper interesting:

Dobes, Dr. Leo (1995), Greenhouse gas emissions in Australian transport in 1900 and 2000, Bureau of Transport and Communications Economics Occassional Paper 110, Department of Transport, Canberra.

It has a section that considers the greenhouse gas emissions from animals.

Anonymous said...

"Belch tax" would be more accurate, but it just wouldn't sound so ... cheeky.

Mark Hadfield