Good points Dan. And Jo.
And we are wandering far away from the thread. Although I do enjoy the conversational quality, the discussions are good, often bringing up information and perspectives new to me.
Regarding cattle and methane. The concern people raise is that methane is said to have a far greater heating effect ( ~ x 40) than if it was CO2. In some time the methane will break down into CO2 and water vapour, but meanwhile it’s significant. All ruminants produce methane, and we have a lot of cattle on the planet.
But, it isn’t a simple calculation, none of these issues are a consideration of one factor. Ruminant methane production varies with diet. Grass fed animals produce much less. Some dietary additives are said to reduce methane.
Grain feed is apparently the worst for producing methane, so that incriminates feedlots, and dairy.
But cattle normally raised need pasture. And pasture builds up organic matter in soil and sod, significant offset. Plus pasture is valuable natural habitat, as hay land often is, much more than cultivated fields.
It seems many of these blanket statements come from city people who have no grasp of the whole picture, or militant vegans who think we should be all eating lentils and beans.