In introducing the chapters that follow, we have given a brief insight into the complex array of processes that they represent and the latest thinking on how to estimate emissions. We have also provided an indication of the ways in which CH4 emissions may respond to a changing climate and expanding human population in the 21st century and, most importantly, how emissions from some important sources could be radically reduced through established and emerging mitigation strategies. The potential role of CH4 mitigation in tackling anthropogenic climate change in the coming decades is immense. For many sectors it represents the so-called 'low-hanging fruit' for mitigation policy, especially in the short and medium term. If we are to avoid 'dangerous climate change' then understanding CH4 emissions and radically reducing them must be part of any global response.

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