year, Far Eastern scientists are set to organize three Arctic
expeditions for studying underwater permafrost melting processes
that could lead to major climate change, Interfax reports,
quoting the Far Eastern Branch of the Russian Academy
research will be to evaluate the scale of underwater
permafrost and hydrate degradation, as well as methane
migration volumes in the eastern Arctic.
are worried about the degradation of the underwater
permafrost layer on the Eastern Siberian continental shelf. This
process releases huge amounts of methane, an ancient organic
compound, and could influence the global climate," reports the
official website of the Far Eastern Branch of the Russian
Academy of Sciences.
expeditions will be organized by the Ilyichev Pacific
Oceanological Institute of the Far Eastern Branch of the
Russian Academy of Sciences.
current underwater permafrost melting trends, accompanied
by large-scale methane emissions into the atmosphere,
persist, this may cause even more substantial emissions. These
emissions could cause hard-to-predict climatic consequences,
including a hypothetical climate disaster," said Oleg Dudarev, a
leading research associate with the Laboratory of Arctic
Research at the Pacific Oceanological Institute of the Far
Eastern Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
first gas emissions were detected in 2011 in the northern
part of the Laptev Sea, with methane accounting for up
to 70 percent of these emissions. Several hundred gas
emissions called mega-seeps were recorded over one square
kilometer of the seabed.
results of the 2012, 2014 and 2016 expeditions show that seabed
methane emissions continue to increase in the vicinity
of the mega-seeps, with the diameter of some "torches"
reaching several hundred meters.
the underwater permafrost layer continues to melt at an
increasing rate, growing greenhouse gas emissions would lead to major
climate change, scientists note. This, in turn, would change the
ecological parameters of the Arctic seas and probably those
of the entire World Ocean.