The livestock sector is vulnerable to climate change and related policy in two ways. First, livestock production and performance are directly impacted by climate with many projected effects being negative. Second, the sector may need to alter operations to limit the effects of climate change through adaptation and mitigation. Potential adaptation strategies involve land use decisions, animal feeding changes, genetic manipulation and alterations in species and/or breeds. In terms of mitigation, livestock is a substantial contributor to global non-CO2 greenhouse gas emissions. Mitigation opportunities involve altered land use for grazing and feed production, feeding practices, manure treatment and herd size reduction. In addition, strengthening institutions that promote markets and trade, as well as local support programs can help both mitigation and adaptation. Previous literature has summarized the options available to individual producers. This overview extends the literature by including sector-level response as well as the relationships between adaptation and mitigation activities.
An overview of mitigation and adaptation needs and strategies for the livestock sector