Whole farm systems analysis of the greenhouse gas emissions of Australian dairy farms - Karen Christie

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  • 394 to 8,870 t CO2e/annum
  • Milk intensity is 10.4 to 22.4 t CO2e/t MS
  • Milk intensity mean is 14.3 t CO2e/t MS, 1 stdev is 2.2 t CO2e/t MS with only 9 farms outside 1 stdev
  • Tassie only location with sig milk intensity difference; no diff in cow intensity; SE Vic and Tas sig higher than NSW, QLD and WA; SA, Nth Vic and SW Vic not sig diff to any region

Transcript

  • 1. Whole farm systems analysis of the greenhouse gas emissions of Australian dairy farms Karen Christie, Cameron Gourley, Richard Rawnsley CCRSPI Conference, Feb 2011
  • 2. Presentation overview• Accounting for Nutrients (A4N) project• Estimating the GHG emissions• Greenhouse gas emission results• Influence of regional location on GHG emissions intensity• Influence of level of grain feeding on GHG emissions intensity• Influence of farming system on GHG emissions intensity
  • 3. A4N dataset• 41 farms from throughout Australia• Data originally collected to undertakenutrient budgets but could be assessedfor GHG emissions• Diversity of farms with varying farmand herd sizes, levels of milk productionper cow, level of grain and othersupplementary feeding and also variedfrom being predominantly pasture-based through to partial mixed rations
  • 4. Estimating GHG emissions• Dairy Greenhouse gas Abatement Strategies (DGAS) calculator• Based on Australian and IPCC algorithms, emission factors andmethodologies• Estimates 4 sources of emissions (all converted to CO2equivalents)  pre-farm embedded emissions;  carbon dioxide;  methane;  nitrous oxide.• DGAS presents results as total farm GHG emissions (t CO2e) and milkGHG emission intensity (t CO2e/t milksolids)
  • 5. Total farm and milk GHG emission intensity 10000 25 9000Total farm GHG emissions (t CO2e/annum) 8000 20 GHG emissions intensity (t CO2e/t MS) 7000 6000 15 5000 4000 10 3000 2000 5 1000 0 0 1 4 7 10 13 16 19 22 25 28 31 34 37 40
  • 6. Total farm and milk GHG emission intensity 10000 25 9000Total farm GHG emissions (t CO2e/annum) 8000 20 GHG emissions intensity (t CO2e/t MS) 7000 6000 15 5000 4000 10 3000 2000 5 1000 0 0 1 4 7 10 13 16 19 22 25 28 31 34 37 40
  • 7. Total farm and milk GHG emission intensity 10000 25 9000Total farm GHG emissions (t CO2e/annum) 8000 20 GHG emissions intensity (t CO2e/t MS) 7000 6000 15 5000 4000 10 3000 2000 5 1000 0 0 1 4 7 10 13 16 19 22 25 28 31 34 37 40
  • 8. Milk GHG emission intensity 10000 y = 12.1x + 262.0 Total farm GHG emissions (t CO2e/annum) R² = 0.95 8000 6000 4000 2000 0 0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 900 Milk production (t MS/annum)
  • 9. Cow GHG emission intensity 10000 y = 6.3x - 28.0 Total farm GHG emissions (t CO2e/annum) R² = 0.98 8000 6000 4000 2000 0 0 200 400 600 800 1000 1200 1400 1600 Milking herd size
  • 10. Area GHG emission intensity 10000 y = 3.9x + 875.1 Total farm GHG emissions (t CO2e/annum) R² = 0.32 8000 6000 4000 2000 0 0 200 400 600 800 1000 1200 Total farm area (ha)
  • 11. Mean regional GHG emission intensity resultsRegion Milk intensity Cow intensity Area intensity (t CO2e/t MS) (t CO2e/cow) (t CO2e/ha)NSW 14.4b 6.5a 5.8bQLD 14.8b 5.8a 4.4bSA 13.1b 6.4a 7.8abTAS 17.8a 5.9a 10.9aNorthern VIC 13.0b 6.3a 8.6abSouth Eastern VIC 13.6b 6.2a 10.1aSouth Western VIC 13.2b 5.9a 6.5abWA 14.5b 6.1a 5.2bMean 14.3 6.2 7.5Superscript letter which differ indicate a significant (P<0.05) difference in GHG emissions intensity
  • 12. Influence of grain feeding on GHG emissions intensity • Three grain feeding groups  Low: < 1 tonne DM/annum  Medium: 1 to 2 tonnes DM/annum  High: > 2 tonnes DM/annum • 20 low grain feeding farms • 18 medium grain feeding farms • 3 high grain feeding farms • Combined the medium and high grain feeding farms together
  • 13. Influence of grain feeding on GHG emissions intensityGrain feeding Milk intensity Cow intensity Area intensitygroup (t CO2e/t MS) (t CO2e/cow) (t CO2e/ha)Low (< 1 t 15.3a 5.9b 8.6aDM/cow.lactation)Med/high (> 1 t 13.4b 6.4a 6.5aDM/cow.lactation)LSD (P=0.05) 1.3 0.4 n.s.Superscript letter which differ indicate a significant (P<0.05) difference in GHG emissions intensity
  • 14. Influence of farming system on GHG emissions intensity • Dairy Australia defined farming system (FS) classification • A4N dataset only represented 3 of the 4 FS groups  FS1: low grain/purchased supplements and milk production per cow  FS2: medium grain/purchased supplements and milk production per cow  FS3: high grain/purchased supplements and milk production per cow with some mixed ration on a feedpad as required • 19 FS1 farms, 13 FS2 farms and 9 FS3 farms
  • 15. Influence of farming system on GHG emissions intensityFarming system Milk intensity Cow intensity Area intensitygroup (t CO2e/t MS) (t CO2e/cow) (t CO2e/ha)FS1 15.7a 5.7a 7.6aFS2 13.1b 6.3b 7.6aFS3 12.9b 7.0c 7.2aLSD (P = 0.05)FS1 v FS2; 1.3 0.4 n.s.FS1 v FS3; 1.5 0.4 n.s.FS2 v FS3. n.s. 0.5 n.s.Superscript letter which differ indicate a significant (P<0.05) difference in GHG emissions intensity
  • 16. Concluding remarks• Strong linear relationship between either milk production or milkingherd size and total farm GHG emissions• Increasing grain and/or farm intensity appears to assist in reducingmilk GHG emissions intensity• More farm data is required, especially with the most complex farmingsystems (feedlot dairies) to qualify this previous statement• Will increasing farming intensity, to reduce GHG emissions intensity,be to the detriment of low cost/ pasture based farming systems thatprovides many regions of Australia with it international competitiveadvantage?
  • 17. Acknowledgements• Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries andForestry, through its Australia’s Farming Future Climate ChangeResearch Program, for project funding• Dairy Australia for project funding• Dr Cameron Gourley (Victorian DPI) and the A4N project team forcollecting the A4N dataset