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France. Court of Auditors: cattle farms to be resized

According to the court, they are responsible for 11.8% of CO2 emissions throughout the country

Even in France, cattle breeding has to deal with its detractors. In a very recent report, the French Court of Auditors strongly urged a net reduction in activity for the entire sector, producer - according to the court - of a disproportionate amount of emissions. "Cattle breeding is responsible for 11.8% of CO2 emissions in France, comparable to those of residential buildings in the country", says the Court of Auditors, which, as a result, calls for a reduction in herds. The goal is to make the country compatible with the climate objectives of the global commitment for methane signed by France, taking into account the objectives of public health, food sovereignty and territorial planning.

In fact, the Paris government has undertaken, together with the other European partners, to reduce its global emissions by 50% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels; it also signed the "Global Methane Pledge" in 2021, which aims to reduce global CO2 emissions by 30% between 2020 and 2030.

"Respect of France's commitments for the reduction of methane emissions (concluded in the international agreement Global commitment for methane) - reiterates the Court of Auditors - necessarily requires a significant reduction in livestock". If the indications of the Court were to be slavishly respected, for France, the leading European producer of beef and second largest producer of milk after Germany, it would be a severe blow. Yet, the report states, "the economic model of livestock farms appears fragile and its sustainability continues to depend on the high level of public aid".

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EFA News - European Food Agency