NASA, GODDARD INSTITUTE FOR SPACE STUDIES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA, GODDARD INSTITUTE FOR SPACE STUDIES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Computer-generated map of the world showing the distribution of methane emission by animals. The map was created by applying the 1984 published estimates of annual methane production by animals (cattle, dairy cows, water buffalo, sheep, camels, goats, pigs, horses & caribou) to the distribution of animal populations. The scale is measured in tonnes of methane produced per square kilometre per year. Black areas indicate an absence of data. Atmospheric methane is one of the 'greenhouse gases' responsible for global warming. The main sources are cattle and termites, which emit the gas as a by-product of their digestive systems.
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