(OT) Australia - A flatulent cow tax moo-ed when mooted

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Tax mooted for flatulent cows

SO you think cattle just hang out all day grazing contentedly, getting fat, at peace with nature?

Forget it! They're environmental vandals, all 26million in the national herd. The truth is that because of their complicated digestive system, cattle spend a good deal of their time belching and farting.

They send so much methane into the atmosphere that they're damaging the ozone layer - the fragile mantle that protects us from being fried by the sun - and hastening global warming.

Don't panic. The Federal Government has a plan: It wants graziers to pay a gas tax.

Farmers who can't teach their cattle better manners - there's a plan for that too _would have to pay the tax.

The Australian Greenhouse Office reports that domestic livestock produce about 58million tonnes of greenhouse gas a year - at least two tonnes per animal.

It suggests graziers pay between $10 and $30 for every tonne of gas their herds pass.

Simple maths shows this would add $20 to $60 a year to the production cost of each beast - nationally, between $560million and $1740million a year.

"What a lot of hot air," snorted State Opposition primary industries spokesman Marc Rowell. "It's madness ... a balloon full of hot Canberra air that has to be pricked before it takes off."

Under the international Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse emissions_ signed but not yet ratified - Australia will be required to reduce methane and carbon dioxide gases.

The AGO says it is easy to identify landholders whose tree clearing operations contribute to greenhouse problems.

But it is harder to gauge how much gas a beast produces.

It says the flatulence tax should be based on saleyard movements or abattoir kills.

Scientists are working on a food additive that reduces bovine emissions. Trouble is, they need to take it every three days - a problem for vast outback properties.

The Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics says the burp tax could also lead to an 8% reduction in the national herd by 2010.

And raise the price of beef, warns Mr Rowell.

----------------end of fart article----------------

Flatulent prolix politicians are farting into the wind again...

Regards from Down Under - phew! What's that pong?

-- Pieter (zaadz@icisp.net.au), February 26, 2000


This is a job for the inventor of BEAN-O!!

-- Squirrel Hunter (nuts@upina.cellrelaytower), February 26, 2000.

Maybe someone could invent a new kind of "gas milking machine" like a tube and a ballon, to capture the gas and generate power! What the heck it they can do in in the movie "The Matrix" anybody can do it, right?

(By the way, what doe this have to do with Y2K;)?

-- Helium (HeliumAvid@yahoo.com), February 26, 2000.

Solution: Plug the offending orifices of the cantankerous cows with feisty ferrets. Two problems (cowburps and cowfarts) solved at the same time -- three, if you count being able to wear walking shorts in Australia again.

-- (International Solutions@For.Free), February 26, 2000.

"The teacher wants to know what you do for a living, daddy."

"I work for the government, measuring cow farts."


"Is it okay if I tell her you're a drug dealer?"

-- I'm Here, I'm There (I'm Everywhere@so.beware), February 26, 2000.

Demand that the govt prove the two tons per cow figure by measuring the flatulence emitted by, say, ten percent of the herd before forcing ranchers to pay this tax.

-- JB (noway@jose.com), February 26, 2000.

I agree JB. I want to see gvmt burrowcrats out following cows around, trying to figure out how to separate the s*** from the gas and how to capture 2 whole friggin tons of gas so that it can be weighed and measured. That's a lotta blown up balloons.

After they've got their 2 tons captured, I hope they sit down and have a smoke.

-- JIT (justintime@rightnow.net), February 26, 2000.

"(By the way, what doe this have to do with Y2K;)? "

We're facing a serious fuel shortage. This could be the answer.

-- Markus Archus (apxov@mail.com), February 26, 2000.

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