Permafrost: hiding a climate time bomb?

“On the front line of climate change in the Canadian Arctic, scientists hunt for clues to a potentially catastrophic global warming trend: melting permafrost.

“On the rolling landscape of shrubs and moss around Hudson Bay, they probe the once impenetrable ground now thawing in places due to global warming.

“Teams are measuring the soil’s carbon content, temperature, pace of melt and the resulting release of once-trapped greenhouse gases.

“There is twice as much carbon in permafrost than in the atmosphere,” said Florent Domine, a researcher with France’s National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS).”  From:

GR:  This can’t be mentioned too often:  Permafrost is starting to melt at higher than normal rates. The concern is how fast the melting will accelerate.  At present it is a minor contributor of greenhouse gas (methane), but if our current rate of warming accelerates, permafrost melting and methane release could speed up. This would speed up global warming and further accelerate permafrost melting in an unstoppable upward spiral.


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