Jason Box Urges Care, Caution, Study on Arctic Methane Risk
July 14, 2016
Professor Jason E. Box, Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS) joins Thom. June 2016 marked the lowest recorded level that arctic sea ice has ever hit in the month June – and that’s bad news for our planet’s climate.
My Dark Snow colleague Dr. Jason Box offers some welcome buffering to some of the overly hyped Arctic methane-bomb rhetoric on the internet.
There is indeed reason for concern, and nobody is more concerned than scientists like Dr. Box who follow the issue, and importantly, have children.
Yes, large amounts of methane are frozen in undersea arctic permafrost, and a large release of that powerful greenhouse gas would indeed mean, as Dr. Box famously tweeted two years ago, that we would be “effed”. Indeed, methane seeps have been observed in the arctic ocean, but the area has not been well enough studied to tell how many, over what area, and whether these are new, or background phenomena that have been ongoing for some time.
But, data does not show a Methane melt-down currently in progress, despite what you may have seen on various heavy breathing you-tubes and websites from the “imminent human extinction” crowd.
Still, the risk is real, and represents a possible global high impact event that needs more study, which it is starting to get, with serious resources being deployed by several Arctic nations, as Dr. Box relates above.
See also today’s other sea ice post below on this page.