'Kangaroos vs. Cattle and Sheep: Animal Welfare, Animal Protection, and the Law'
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In 2008 the Garnaut Climate Change Review: Final Report made a bold recommendation: >>For most of Australia’s human history—around 60 000 years—kangaroo was the main source of meat. It could again become important. … [Modelling shows] the potential for kangaroos to replace sheep and cattle for meat production in Australia’s rangelands, where kangaroos are already harvested. … [B]y 2020 beef cattle and sheep numbers in the rangelands could be reduced by 7 million and 36 million respectively, and … this would create the opportunity for an increase in kangaroo numbers from 34 million today to 240 million by 2020 … [leading to a] net reduction in greenhouse gas emissions (Garnaut 2008, 547–548).<< Perhaps inspired by the Garnaut Report, the Committee on Sustainable Agriculture and Environment, in the case study presented by Irvine (2012), is proposing to substitute rangeland domesticated animal farming with kangaroo harvesting to improve the ecology and soil quality of semi-arid regions in Australia. As laudable as this goal may be, the committee’s policy prescription rests on key assumptions about animal welfare that are open to question.
Journal of Bioethical Inquiry
© 2013 Springer Netherlands. This is an electronic version of an article published in the Journal of Bioethical Inquiry, Vol. 10(2), pp. 273-276, 2013. The Journal of Bioethical Inquiry is available online at: http://link.springer.com/ with the open URL of your article.
Environmental and Natural Resources Law