Stephanie Nash: Tennessee farmer hates forcing cows to wear masks, diapers to contain methane emissions
CHAPEL HILL, TENNESSEE: A Tennessee farmer has criticized the idea of forcing the cows to wear masks and diapers to contain their methane emissions. Stephanie Nash said the people who came up with the idea have "gone to loony town." In mid-January this year, French dairy giant Danone announced that it intends to put masks and diapers on cows to trap their flatulence and burps in an effort to reduce their methane emissions by at least 30% come 2030.
Nash termed the entire thing utter madness on Wednesday, January 18, on 'Tucker Carlson Tonight.' "Well, Tucker, you know, I'm not going to wear a mask. I'm not going to allow my cows to wear a mask," she said, according to Fox News. During the interview, she even put a mask on one of her cows to test the theory but explained "she's not having it" and is "struggling to breathe."
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, livestocks which mainly include cows and cattle, produce methane, which is a dangerous greenhouse gas that warms the atmosphere, as part of their normal digestive process. Livestock emissions fom manure and gastroenteric releases account for roughly 30% of the world's methane emissions, according to new data from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Climate and Clean Air Coalition.
Nash told host Tucker Carlson that her farm is doing "big things to cut emissions." She explained, "We have ruminants on our farm that can digest byproducts. A good example is we feed our cows soybean meal that comes from soy oil production. And you have to ask yourself, millions of tons per year – if we don't have cows to digest that byproduct, it has to go somewhere. It has to go to a landfill. It has to go on, you know, into a waste management. And that's going to be very harmful. That's going to leave an imprint, you know, for our country and gases going into our environment."
Carlson questioned if putting a diaper on a cow is practical and wondered if the whole thing was a joke. "I think these people have gone to loony town. There's no possible way that I'm going to put a diaper on my cow," she stated. Nash said her cows have to be able to walk around freely, lay down, eat and drink water to live a comfortable life. "Our animals are under the best stewardship, and we want them to be as comfortable as possible. And telling me how to do my job is not the way to eliminate emissions. We have to be smart about this. We have to listen to the farmer [or] rancher and what is best for our animals."