Scientists have warned about the catastrophic consequences of the thawing of submerged permafrost in the Arctic
Moscow. April 27. INTERFAX.RU — Far this year, scientists are planning to organize three expeditions to the Arctic to study the melting submarine permafrost, which may lead to serious climate change.
“The concern of scientists is the intense degradation of the underwater permafrost of the East Siberian shelf, which leads to the release of huge amounts of ancient organic matter and can affect the climate map of the planet,” — said in a statement posted on the official website of the far Eastern branch of RAS.
The expedition plans to organize this year’s Pacific Oceanological Institute (POI) named after V. I. Ilichev of far East branch (DVO) of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
“The current rate of thawing underwater permafrost, accompanied by the massive flow of methane into the atmosphere, can be even more powerful release. It can lead to unpredictable climatic consequences, not excluding the scenario of climate catastrophe,” — said a leading researcher of the laboratory of Arctic studies of the POI Feb RAS Oleg Dudarev, whose words are reported.
Therefore, the main objectives of the research, the scientists called the detection of the degradation of submarine permafrost and gas hydrates, assessment of methane gas migration in the Eastern Arctic.
The first jets of gas, of which 70% is methane, was discovered in 2011 in the Northern part of the Laptev sea. In the area of the bottom area of one square kilometer, there were several hundred gas outlets, collectively known as MegaZoom. The results of the expeditions conducted in 2012, 2014 and 2016, showed that the release rate of methane from the seabed in the areas megapov increases, some torches in diameter reach hundreds of meters.
In addition to climatic effects megacity may pose a threat in the development of hydrocarbon deposits.
“As a rule, they are located within the license areas of the developers of hydrocarbon deposits on the Arctic shelf. This means possible problems with the organization and safe exploitation of the deposits. For example, in areas degradation of permafrost as a result of its melting formed subsidence thermokarst depressions”, — stated in the message.
Scientists say that if the thawing of submerged permafrost will increase, the increase in greenhouse gas emissions will be reflected in changes of climatic parameters. This, in turn, will lead to changes in ecological characteristics of the seas is not only the Arctic, but possibly the entire World ocean.