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Denmark to introduce world’s first livestock carbon tax

COPENHAGEN (AFP) – Denmark will introduce the world’s first carbon tax on livestock, a unique measure designed to bring the Scandinavian country closer to its goal of carbon neutrality by 2045.

From 2030, methane emissions caused by flatulence from cattle will be taxed at a rate of DKK300 (USD43) per tonne of carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalent.

This amount will rise to DKK750 in 2035 under the terms of an agreement reached at the end of June between the government, part of the opposition and representatives of livestock farmers, industry and trade unions. The text still has to be approved by Parliament which will examine it after the summer.

For Christian Fromberg, a campaign leader at Greenpeace Nordic, the text “offers hope… in a situation where a lot of countries are backpedalling on climate action”.

“While the carbon tax should have been both higher and implemented sooner, it does marks a significant milestone,” he told AFP.

At the same time, Fromberg deplored the “missed opportunity” to bring about “a new direction for Danish agriculture”.

This is despite the fact that its practices remain highly intensive and discharges a lot of nitrogen, which is responsible for deoxygenating the water.