The Sydney Morning Herald today presents a wonderful dilemma for greenies generally intent on preventing any culling of kangaroos: eating kangaroo instead of beef or lamb has the potential to drastically decrease greenhouse gas production!
"It has long been known that hard-hoofed sheep and cattle have caused land degradation across the continent. But only recently have scientists become aware of the damage done by large methane emissions of traditional farm stock," the SMH reports.
According to a new study sheep and cattle constitute 11 per cent of Australia's total greenhouse gas emissions; kangaroos, however, because they are not ruminants, produce relatively little methane.
"Reducing cattle and sheep populations and increasing the kangaroo population on the rangelands to 175 million to produce the same amount of meat by 2020 would lower [greenhouse gas emissions] by 16 megatonnes, or 3 per cent of Australia's total emissions," the paper says.
There are other advantages too - lower management costs for farmers, and a more nutritious product (kangaroo meat is very high in iron and low in fat). And of course, kangaroo meat is allowed to anyone attempting to follow the Benedictine Rule, which only prohibits the eating of four-footed animals! So for it...(but not today as it is Friday!)