Beef cows of Jones Angus Farms in Callaway County, Missouri.

About 11% of greenhouse gases in the United States come from the agriculture sector, most from three sources: Soil management, enteric fermentation and manure management.  

Enteric fermentation is the methane released by livestock, most of it from cows belching, which accounts for about one-third of all agriculture-related greenhouse gases. 

Texas, Nebraska, California, Kansas and Oklahoma lead the nation in cow burp-caused methane. 

Recently, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced plans to spend $300 million improving its system for tracking the impact of farming and ranching on climate change.

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said the additional funding will help improve measurement, monitoring, reporting, and verification of greenhouse gas emissions and carbon sequestration in climate-smart agriculture and forestry, according to a July statement

Type of work:

Explainer A data-driven story that provides background, definition and detail on a specific topic.

Ben Felder covers agribusiness and the meat industry in Oklahoma for Investigate Midwest. Felder previously worked for The Oklahoman as a political enterprise reporter blending narrative storytelling,...