14 Jan '12, 5pm

Skeptical science presents their take on the reports of methane bubbling up from the Arctic. via @skepticscience

Until relatively recently, the subsea permafrost of the ESAS saw little or no attention compared to the onshore permafrost: it was simply assumed that it was unlikely to be a source area for methane because it was all frozen solid. That assumption was turned on its head in 2003 when the first of a series of field expeditions by scientists from the University of Alaska at Fairbanks took place and resulted in an ominous discovery: surface and especially bottom waters were super-saturated with methane, implying that outgassing from the sea-bed was occurring. Further fieldwork went on to discover plumes of methane gas bubbling up to the surface. In deeper waters, methane does not make it all the way up to the atmosphere - it all dissolves in seawater - but over the shallower waters of the ESAS this is not the case. Air sampling surveys over the ESAS revealed great variability ...

Full article: http://www.skepticalscience.com/news.php?n=1224

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