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RESEARCH ARTICLE

Measurement of greenhouse gas emissions from Australian feedlot beef production using open-path spectroscopy and atmospheric dispersion modelling

Zoë Loh A , Deli Chen A E , Mei Bai B , Travis Naylor B , David Griffith B , Julian Hill A , Tom Denmead A C , Sean McGinn A D and Robert Edis A
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A Faculty of Land and Food Resources, University of Melbourne, Vic. 3010, Australia.

B University of Wollongong, Wollongong, NSW 2500, Australia.

C CSIRO Land and Water, Canberra, ACT 2600, Australia.

D Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Lethbridge, Canada.

E Corresponding author. Email: delichen@unimelb.edu.au

Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture 48(2) 244-247 https://doi.org/10.1071/EA07244
Submitted: 6 August 2007  Accepted: 25 November 2007   Published: 2 January 2008

Abstract

Feedlot production of beef cattle results in concentrated sources of gas emissions to the atmosphere. Reported here are the preliminary results of a micrometeorological study using open-path concentration measurements to determine whole-of-feedlot emissions of methane (CH4) and ammonia (NH3). Tunable near-infrared diode lasers were used to measure line-averaged (150–400 m) open-path concentrations of CH4 and NH3. A backward Lagrangian stochastic model of atmospheric dispersion and the software package WindTrax were used to estimate greenhouse gas fluxes from the measured concentrations. We studied typical Australian beef feedlots in the north (Queensland) and south (Victoria) of the continent. The data from a campaign during summer show a range of CH4 emissions from 146 g/animal.day in Victoria to 166 g/animal.day in Queensland and NH3 emissions from 125 g/animal.day in Victoria to 253 g/animal.day Queensland.


Acknowledgements

The study is jointly funded by the Australian Greenhouse Office and Meat and Livestock Australia.


References


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