Sunday, April 12, 2009

Indian Bovines

I have no comment or input of value on the scientific accuracy of the article but am definitely impressed that the 283 million burping and belching cows of India have merited an article in Time magazine. So what if they did not make the cover page, though one hopes that would be the logical next step for our nation's ubiquitous bovine - the strength in numbers cannot be underestimated.

Now that these hapless creatures have been identified as a big contributor to the global warming problem, you wonder what lifestyle adjustments might be required of them to minimize their deleterious effects on the environment - if it may be mandated they ingest chemicals that would turn the methane they are currently emitting into something less noxious. Obviously dealing with a bunch of cows is a lot easier than getting millions of human beings to reduce their carbon footprints.

I can't imagine any of this is good news for the Indian cows or for the consumers of their milk the yield of which is enhanced by putting the cows on a diet "urea-molasses-mineral blocks". That sure does not conjure up the image of a cud-chewing ruminant, grazing peacefully on rolling acres of green - though the purveyors of dairy products would love for us to buy into just that imagery.


ggop said...

Agreed HC. Here we read tomes by Michael Pollan and articles with Alice Waters and then drink organic milk sans antibiotics while poor Indian cows are being offered a slow release antibiotic to reduce gas. What next - rGBH? Then we will see reduction in the median age of young girls attaining puberty? Just like the US?
Double standards what?

To all beef eaters of the world I want to remind them that a kg of beef needs 15,000 litres of water as compared to a kg of vegetables which needs 2000 litres.

Heartcrossings said...

ggop - It seems like the developed world wants to have its cake and eat it to. I was listening to this story on NPR about how the green revolution is driving the farmers there out of work and depleting the soil to the point that nothing will grow anymore. So much for doing things the right way a la the West....