Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Methane to make climate change more serious?

Though carbon dioxide is the greenhouse gas mostly responsible for climate change methane could also play one of the leading roles in climate change scenario in years to come. Methane is highly potent greenhouse gas, in fact it is as much as 60 times more potent than carbon dioxide, and therefore any significant rise of methane in future could mean even bigger climate change impact.

You may have already heard about the so called "methane time bomb" that could cause drastic increase in temperatures. If not, then let me further explain. Many scientists are convinced that vast amounts of the natural gas trapped in the frozen Arctic kingdom could soon be released because higher temperatures are melting permafrost. If this turn out to be true then temperature rise will be indeed huge, and our climate will be out of control.

The current data says that atmospheric methane levels began rising in 2007 which coincides with the start of biggest ice shrinkage in Arctic. In 2008 and 2009 methane levels have continued their rise.

In period from 1995 to 2007 there was no increase in methane levels in atmosphere but British scientists have calculated that globally averaged atmospheric methane increased by around 7 parts per billion per year during 2007 and 2008.

However it is not certain that methane levels will continue to grow in the atmosphere in years to come but nevertheless if methane emissions are to continue their growth then we could be heading into real trouble, and climate change could even show us its most scariest face.

You can never be sure with greenhouse gases.

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