Regional Environmental Change

, Volume 17, Issue 1, pp 129–141

Climate change mitigation and productivity gains in livestock supply chains: insights from regional case studies

  • Anne Mottet
  • Benjamin Henderson
  • Carolyn Opio
  • Alessandra Falcucci
  • Giuseppe Tempio
  • Silvia Silvestri
  • Sabrina Chesterman
  • Pierre J. Gerber
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10113-016-0986-3

Cite this article as:
Mottet, A., Henderson, B., Opio, C. et al. Reg Environ Change (2017) 17: 129. doi:10.1007/s10113-016-0986-3


Livestock can contribute to climate change mitigation by reducing their greenhouse gas emissions and by increasing soil carbon sequestration. Packages of mitigation techniques can bring large environmental benefits as illustrated in six case studies modeled in the Global Livestock Environmental Assessment Model developed by FAO. With feasible technical interventions in livestock production systems, the mitigation potential of each of the selected species, systems and regions ranges from 14 to 41 %. While comparably high mitigation potentials were estimated for ruminant and pig production systems in Asia, Latin America and Africa, large emission reductions can also be attained in dairy systems with already high levels of productivity, in OECD countries. Mitigation interventions can lead to a concomitant reduction in emissions and increase in production, contributing to food security. This is particularly the case for improved feeding practices and better health and herd management practices. Livestock systems also have a significant potential for sequestrating carbon in pasturelands and rangelands through improved management, as illustrated in two of the six case studies in this paper.


Climate change Mitigation Livestock systems Productivity Packages of options 

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (PDF 2371 kb)
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Supplementary material 10 (PDF 612 kb)

Funding information

Funder NameGrant NumberFunding Note
European Commission Directorate-General for Research and Innovation
  • 266018

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anne Mottet
    • 1
  • Benjamin Henderson
    • 2
  • Carolyn Opio
    • 1
  • Alessandra Falcucci
    • 1
  • Giuseppe Tempio
    • 1
  • Silvia Silvestri
    • 3
  • Sabrina Chesterman
    • 4
  • Pierre J. Gerber
    • 1
    • 5
  1. 1.UN Food and Agriculture OrganizationRomeItaly
  2. 2.Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, Queensland Bioscience PrecinctSt LuciaAustralia
  3. 3.Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences InternationalNairobiKenya
  4. 4.International Livestock Research InstituteNairobiKenya
  5. 5.Animal Production System GroupWageningen UniversityWageningenThe Netherlands

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