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    Repiglican Roast

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    I'm furious about my squandered nation.

    Tuesday, September 23, 2008

    Methane 'escaping' from Arctic sea bed

    [...]

    Huge methane deposits are rising to the surface as the Arctic region heats up, according to preliminary findings.

    Researchers found massive stores of sub-sea methane in several areas across thousands of square miles of the Siberian continental shelf and observed the gas bubbling up from the sea floor through "chimneys", according to reports.

    One of the expedition leaders, Orjan Gustafsson, of Stockholm University in Sweden, said researchers had found "an extensive area of intense methane release".

    [...]

    The researchers believe escaping sub-sea methane - which is around 20 times more damaging than carbon dioxide - is connected to the recent rises in temperatures in the Arctic region.

    He added: "The conventional thought has been that the permafrost 'lid' on the sub-sea sediments on the Siberian shelf should cap and hold the massive reservoirs of shallow methane deposits in place.

    "The growing evidence for release of methane in this inaccessible region may suggest that the permafrost lid is starting to get perforated and thus leak methane. The permafrost now has small holes.

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