Our Organisation Search
Quick Links
Toggle: Topics

Donal M. O'Brien

Research Officer

Research Interests

  • Carbon foot-printing of ruminant production system.
  • Life Cycle assessment and whole farm modelling of agricultural systems.
  • Developing decision support tools to improve farm sustainability

Current Projects

  • EU LIFE Program: Beef Carbon – Demonstrate actions to mitigate the carbon footprint of beef production in Ireland, France, Italy and Spain
  • EPA Climate Program: Review national emission factors for methane emissions from livestock


PhD in Agricultural and Environmental Science, University College Dublin

Bachelor of Agricultural Science, University College Dublin

Dr. O'Brien has published many peer reviewed scientific papers:

O’Brien, D., Hennessy, T., Moran, B., Shalloo, L., 2015. Relating the carbon footprint of milk from Irish dairy farms to economic performance. Journal of Dairy Science, 98, 7394-7407.

O’Brien, D., Brennan, P., Humphreys, J., Ruane, E., Shalloo, L., 2014. An appraisal of carbon footprint of milk from commercial grass-based dairy farms in Ireland according to a certified life cycle assessment methodology. The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment 19, 1469-1481.

O’Brien, D., Shalloo, L., Crosson, P., Donnellan, T., Farrelly, N., Finnan, J., Hanrahan, K., Lalor, S., Lanigan, G., Thorne, F., Schulte, R., 2014. An evaluation of the effect of greenhouse gas accounting methods on a marginal abatement cost curve for Irish agricultural greenhouse gas emissions. Environmental Science and Policy 39, 107-118.

O’Brien, D., Capper, J.L., Garnsworthy, P.C., Grainger, C., Shalloo, L., 2014. A case study of the carbon footprint of milk from high-performing confinement and grass-based dairy farms. Journal of Dairy Science 97, 1835-1851 

O’Brien, D., Shalloo, L., Grainger, C., Buckley, F., Horan, B., Wallace, M., 2010. The influence of strain of Holstein-Friesian cow and feeding system on greenhouse gas emissions from pastoral dairy farms. Journal of Dairy Science 93, 3390-3402

Paul Rice

Jonathan Herron