The Siberian Heatwaves are a major reason behind these permafrost methane bombs.
The 2020 heatwaves increased the emission of methane from limestone deposits. This resulted in such permafrost methane bombs. This is estimated to speed up the rate of Global warming.
Global warming is seen due to the trapping of heat by the Earth’s atmosphere. The gases that cause this trap are known as Greenhouse gases. Methane and carbon dioxide are 2 of the worst Greenhouse gases observed.
The Study On Permafrost Methane Bombs
A study conducted by Bonn University recorded the massive heatwaves. This was said to have raised the mercury by 6 degrees celsius. This study was conducted from 1970 to 2000.
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Initially, the Taymyr Fold and the rim of the Siberian Platform were the regions observed to have an increase in the concentration of methane. 2021 has seen this concentration spread across the entire region of Siberia.
These 2 areas were formed above limestone deposits and dated back to 541m years. The Paleozoic era could be the origin of such formations.
Permafrost covers 15% of the Northern Hemispheres, in terms of methane concentrations in the air. This comes almost close to 11% when you take the whole planet into consideration.
If such a region melts due to climate changes, it would result in a catastrophe. It would have a greater impact than the previously estimated 0.2 degrees Celsius rise. The limestones would get porous and would result in releasing permafrost methane bombs.
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Dr. Nikolaus Froitzheim has stated that natural gas is trapped within such layers and its methane can reach the surface. The amount of gas trapped is massive and can add to the atmosphere if released. The thawing of permafrost can release these huge balls of methane and overheat the globe. Dr. Froitzhein is a professor at Bonn University.
All Image Credits: Reuters