ASGGN Country Representative 

Hutton Oddy     

GRA livestock Research Group Country Contacts

Organisation:            Department of Agriculture Fisheries & Forestry

Lee Nelson             

Leann Palmer         

Josh Francis           

National Livestock Methane Program

The National Livestock Methane Program (NLMP) began on July 1, 2012.  There are 16 projects in the NLMP with major research groups in Australia, who have expertise in the science of rumen biology and livestock management, are collaborating to develop practical on-farm options for reducing methane emissions from livestock while at the same time increasing productivity. Research is also being undertaken to develop technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from animal waste in feedlots within the Manure Consortium led by Australian Pork Limited that includes funding from the Commonwealth Government, MLA, Dairy Australia and other partners.

NLMP Objectives

  • develop practical on-farm options to achieve a significant reduction in methane emissions from livestock
  • quantify the level of abatement achievable while at the same time increasing productivity
  • provide the science to underpin methodologies developed under theCarbon Farming Initiative

Structure of NLMP 

The NLMP is funded by the Australian Government's Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, under the Filling the Research Gap program with MLA, and support from the following collaborating organisations:

  • Australian Wine Research Institute (AWRI)
  • Australian Wool Innovation
  • Dairy Australia
  • Department of Primary Industries, Victoria (VicDPI)
  • Department of Primary Industries, New South Wales (NSWDPI)
  • Ridley's Agriproducts
  • Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT)
  • University of New England (UNE)
  • University of Western Australia (UWA)


MLA is coordinating the program on behalf of, and in partnership with, the Commonwealth Government.

ContactJulian Hill

Reducing Emissions from Livestock Research Program (RELRP)

The Australian Government’s Reducing Emissions from Livestock Research Program (RELRP) was a three year national collaborative program coordinated by Meat & Livestock Australia. The program aimed to develop knowledge and technologies on methane emissions to enable producers to reduce livestock emissions while maintaining or improving livestock productivity.

RELRP ran from 2009-2012 and was focussed on:

  • methane mitigation from the rumen of sheep and cattle; and
  • methane and nitrous oxide from feedlot manure. 

Primary Outcome

More accurate knowledge of methane emissions, the levels of mitigation possible and production impacts using a range of strategies. Further work is required to refine the findings from RELRP and further explore reduction options. This is now being undertaken in a new body of research – the National Livestock Methane Program – coordinated by MLA with co-investment funding of $14.4 million from DAFF and $3.5 million from MLA over a three year program.


  • Identify inherited variations in methane output which could be used in animal selection and breeding
  • Explore the effect of feed additives/rumen treatment(s) on methane output
  • Examine the effects of different forages, especially natives, on methane output
  • Explore ways to improve the measurement of methane in the field
  • Understand the roles and responses of various rumen microbes involved in methane production
  • Measure gas losses from feedlot manure and test the effects of various mitigating treatments

Key Outcomes:

  • Preliminary results indicate that it will be possible to identify sires whose progeny will produce less methane.
  • Feed supplements– dietary oil and grape marc have shown promising results for reducing methane.
  • Several forages have been identified as having immediate, persistent and maintained methane reduction impact when included as part of a mixed diet.
  • Nitrate supplements have consistently and rapidly reduced methane production, however further understanding of its potential toxicity impact is required.
  • Online calculator – FarmGAS has been developed and launched to allow producers to explore abatement options.

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