To be carbon neutral, farmers would have to remove as much CO2 from the atmosphere as they put into it. Because producing natural milk is always going to require the use of resources, it will always have a carbon footprint. Recent studies have shown, however, a 41% decrease in the size of total U.S. milk production’s footprint from 1944 to 2007. With a decrease in the use of land, feedstuffs, and water, the environmental impact of diary farming is less, however, to offset the remaining carbon output, farmers would have to purchase carbon offsets. These purchases represent metric tons of CO2 that are removed from the atmosphere through renewable energy projects (wind turbines, etc.). Offsets can be purchased by individuals and businesses to mitigate their own greenhouse gas production, and in effect, be carbon neutral.
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