Methane was commissioned for New Climates, an online exhibition of new and existing artworks responding to the relationship between art, global climate change and networked culture.

According to a report by the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the meat industry contributes a staggering 18% of global greenhouse gas emissions—considerably more than transport, which emits 13%. The report, entitled “Livestock’s long shadow,” says the meat industry is degrading land, contributing to the greenhouse effect, polluting water resources, and destroying biodiversity. Livestock use 30% of the earth’s land surface and pastures for cattle use 70% of deforested areas in the Amazon. Massive deforestation is expected as meat consumption is expected to double by 2050 as the populations from emerging countries embrace an unhealthy “western diet” based on meat products and fast food.

To create the video Methane, Alstad searched online for information and imagery mostly absent or ignored by mainstream media and combined found footage of industrial farming conditions with an animation depicting the breakup of the Ayles Ice Shelf in Canada’s Ellesmere Island where more than 90% of the ice cap has been lost. The Canadian Arctic is experiencing the highest degree of climate change on the planet. Methane was selected for the Artport international video art series exploring the threat of global warming.

Methane was included in the following festivals:

Art40 Basel: Focus09 – Basel, Switzerland
COP15: HOPENHAGEN Festival, Copenhagen
Festival international de l’image environnementale, Paris
U-N-F-O-L-D, A Cultural Response to Climate Change, NYC
COP16: 2 Degrees of Separation – Cancun, Mexico