Researchers have found a huge amount of methane emitted from the ocean to the atmosphere through cracks in the melting ice. The amount of methane can seriously affect the climate of the world. Previously detected methane columns rising from the sea floor in shallow waters off the north coast of Siberia. While new studies were performed in the open ocean far from land.
The researchers, led by Eric Corti from NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory reported that the level of methane emissions is growing. "When we flew over the solid ice, we found no evidence of methane. But once we reached the area where the ice melted, the level of methane has increased dramatically. We were greatly puzzled that methane was detected at such a height, "- said the Court. "Methane emissions were already known to many researchers, but no one suspected that it reaches the atmosphere."
In a study published in Nature Geoscience, a detailed description of several operations performed at different times of the year. Scientists covered area of 1500 kilometers to the north coast of Alaska and 560 miles south of the North Pole. The level of methane emitted can be compared with the amount recorded in the coastal areas of East Siberia.
Methane is 70% stronger than carbon dioxide when it comes to the ability to retain heat. Since methane decomposes in the atmosphere much faster than carbon dioxide, according to scientists over a 100-year cycle, its effect is 20 times greater. Therefore, climate scientists particularly concerned with methane emissions, which can lead to a rapid temperature increase around the world.