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Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby onlooker » Sat 25 Mar 2017, 15:52:18

Our situation is intractable and peak oil is part of that. I will concede that. Which is why, I have spent a considerable time on peak oil forums. However, as bad as the consequences of peak oil will be and they will be very bad, the methane escaping will set us up for a Mass Extinction Event
It doesn't get worse than that!
https://www.scientificamerican.com/arti ... xtinction/
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Sat 25 Mar 2017, 16:23:06

OK, I will concede that methane, like water vapor, is a powerful GHG, and that both are worse than carbon dioxide. But we know that the N polar icecap has flat out disappeared during past interglacials, and that both the polar bears and the humans - anyways our hominid precursers, survived just fine. The permafrost must have melted then, too.

Is it any worse today than then? We still have ice up North, and we still seem to be at least 10 degrees C below the peak Climatic Optimum temperatures in the fossil/ice core/tree ring records.

What would you have us do about this? My personal plans are to move North, live on the coast of a Great Lake (the largest mass of fresh water in the world, also not subject to SLR), make my own power and food, and have excess A/C capacity.
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby Cid_Yama » Sat 25 Mar 2017, 18:08:52

No, there were no ice-free interglacials. The last Ice-free Arctic was 2.6 million years ago, just before the first glacial period 2.58 million years ago.

The first of the Homo genus did not appear until 2.3 million years ago.

The Holocene Climate Optimum global average temperature was 1 degree C colder than today.

You really believe a lot of nonsense. Please check your facts before posting. All of the above could have been known to you with just a few clicks on the keyboard.

You might want to stop frequenting those denier websites, they are filling your head full of garbage.
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Sat 25 Mar 2017, 18:33:18

So tell me Cid, are you one of the "Chicken Little" crowd? Do you simply want to arouse as much panic from the unaware as possible? Or do you have a plan that will A) save yourself or B) save you and your loved ones or C) save Americans or D) save everybody everywhere?

Maybe you don't have a plan, maybe you are a pot stirrer, anticipating and relishing the idea of the pot boiling over, which is when you will say:

I told you so!

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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby dohboi » Sat 25 Mar 2017, 20:28:14

"Chicken Little" crowd


you are a pot stirrer


Hmmm, glad to hear that those who doubt well established climate science rarely throw labels at their opponents. :)
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby vox_mundi » Thu 01 Jun 2017, 16:01:55

Massive Craters Formed by Methane Blow-Outs on the Arctic Sea Floor

ImageSeveral hundred of craters in the area. Over one hundred of them are up to one kilometer wide.

A new study in Science shows that hundreds of massive, kilometer-wide craters on the ocean floor in the Arctic were formed by substantial methane expulsions.

Even though the craters were formed some 12,000 years ago, methane is still leaking profusely from the craters. Methane is a potent greenhouse gas, and of major concern in our warming climate.

In comparison, the huge blow-out craters on land on the Siberian peninsulas Yamal and Gydan are 50-90 meters wide, but similar processes may have been involved in their formation

"The crater area was covered by a thick ice sheet during the last ice age, much as West Antarctica is today. As climate warmed, and the ice sheet collapsed, enormous amounts of methane were abruptly released. This created massive craters that are still actively seeping methane " says Karin Andreassen, first author of the study and professor at CAGE Centre for Arctic Gas Hydrate, Environment and Climate.

Today more than 600 gas flares are identified in and around these craters, releasing the greenhouse gas steadily into the water column.

"But that is nothing compared to the blow-outs of the greenhouse gas that followed the deglaciation. The amounts of methane that were released must have been quite impressive."

Image

A few of these craters were first observed in the 90-ties. But new technology shows that the craters cover a much larger area than previously thought and provides more detailed imaging for interpretation

"We have focused on craters that are 300 meters to 1 kilometre wide, and have mapped approximately 100 craters of this size in the area. But there are also many hundred smaller ones, less than 300 meters wide that is" says Andreassen.


Image

"Despite their infrequency, the impact of such blow-outs may still be greater than impact from slow and gradual seepage. It remains to be seen whether such abrupt and massive methane release could have reached the atmosphere. We do estimate that an area of hydrocarbon reserves twice the size of Russia was directly influenced by ice sheets during past glaciation. This means that a much larger area may have had similar abrupt gas releases in the overlapping time period " says Andreassen

Another fact to consider is that there are reserves of hydrocarbons beneath the ice overburden of West Antarctica and Greenland ice sheets today.

K. Andreassen el al., "Massive blow-out craters formed by hydrate-controlled methane expulsion from the Arctic seafloor," Science Vol. 356, Issue 6341, pp. 948-953 (2017).


Leaking Pingos Can Explode Under the Sea in the Arctic, as Well as On Land'

Warning of methane blasts in Kara Sea adjacent to Yamal craters caused by gas eruptions associated with melting permafrost due to global warming.

Huge attention has focused on the mysterious large holes that have suddenly appeared in the Siberian Arctic recently, and now there is evidence of a similar process underwater in southern areas of the Kara Sea.

Large mounds - described as pingos - have been identified on the seabed off the Yamal Peninsula, and their formation is seen as due to the thawing of subsea permafrost, causing a 'high accumulation' of methane gas.

These mounds 'are leaking methane' and their 'blowout potential' poses a significant 'geohazard' to energy exploration in Arctic waters, according to new research by scientists at Centre for Arctic Gas Hydrate, Environment and Climate (CAGE) in Norway, supported by the Federal Subsoil Resources Management Agency of Russia.

For example, in a little-reported incident 20 years ago, during 'geotechnological drilling' by Russian vessel Bavenit in the Pechora Sea, a pingo gas deposit was opened, threatening the ship's safety with a sudden methane release.

Dr Pavel Serov, lead author of the research which is published in the Journal of Geophysical Research, said: 'Pingos are intensively discussed in the scientific community especially in the context of global climate warming scenarios. They may be the step before the methane blows out.' The researchers focused on 'two subsea pingos that were identified offshore (of) the very same area of the mysterious Yamal peninsula craters', reported the CAGE website.

The Norwegian study 'shows how important methane accumulation is for the formation of subsea pingos'. These structures are 'now found strewn on the ocean floor in the Arctic shallow seas', according to the research by CAGE, part of UiT The Arctic University of Norway. 'The study area lies in the shallow South Kara Sea, at approximately 40-metre water depth.'

The underwater mounds were between 70 metres and 1,000 metres in diameter, and had been spotted originally on a seismic study of the area. They rise between five and nine metres above the surrounding sea floor. In overall size they are considerably larger than those found on land in Yamal.

Dr Serov said: 'Our question was: Are these mounds submerged terrestrial pingos? Or are they something different forming under marine conditions? One of the South Kara Sea pingos was leaking a lot of methane but where was the methane coming from?'


Initially it was thought the undersea pingos were 'relics of the Ice Age', but the groundbreaking new research indicates the reverse, indicated CAGE director Professor Jurgen Mienert, a co-author of the paper. 'The CAGE study shows these newly discovered subsea pingos may be quite recent.'

Crucially, 'gas leakage from one of the ocean floor pingos offshore (of) Siberia shows a specific chemical signature that indicates modern generation of methane', state the researchers. 'We suggest that the mound formed more recently, moving material physically upwards.' Likewise the processes leading to methane eruptions on the neighbouring peninsula are seen as very recent.

Image
Location of Pingo-like Features (PLF)

The researchers warned: 'For petroleum companies these areas may pose a geohazard. Drilling a hole into one of these subsea pingos, can be not only expensive but also catastrophic. During a geotechnical drilling in the close by Pechora Sea, an industry vessel unknowingly drilled a hole into one of these mounds. It triggered a massive release of gas that almost sunk the vessel.'

This is believed to refer to an incident in 1995 involving the Bavenit, west of Vaygach Island in the Pechora Sea. Dr Serov stated: 'We don't know if the methane expelled from the subsea pingos reaches the atmosphere. But it is crucial that we observe and understand these processes better, especially in shallow areas, where the distance between the ocean floor and the atmosphere is short.'
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby Synapsid » Fri 02 Jun 2017, 18:25:42

vox mundi,

Thanks for this.
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby vox_mundi » Tue 04 Jul 2017, 06:42:13

'Big Bang' and 'Pillar of Fire' as Latest of Two New Craters Forms This Week in the Arctic

Image

Scientists have located two fresh craters formed on Yamal peninsula this year, with the latest exploding on 28 June with the eruption picked up by new seismic sensors specifically designed to monitor such events, The Siberian Times can disclose.

First pictures of the large craters - or funnels as experts call them - are shown here, and add to four other big holes found in recent years and examined by experts, plus dozens of tiny ones spotted by satellite.

The formation of both craters involved an explosion followed by fire, evidently signs of the eruption of methane gas pockets under the Yamal surface.

Deputy director of the Oil and Gas Research Institute, Moscow, Professor Vasily Bogoyavlensky said: 'We heard the news (about the new crater) from people in Seyakha village who saw a flame of fire and then a rising pillar of smoke.'

Reindeer herder Yakov Vengo has a camp near there. His observation:
'It happened some 35 to 40 kilometres north-west of Seyakha,' ... 'There was a hill not far from the camp, and it exploded. 'There were fire, smoke and huge chunks of soil 'flying out' of the epicentre. ...'The hill has vanished'

Helicopter reconnaissance of the site shows a crater appearing in a river, so it assumed the 'hill' was beside or abutting the river.

The crater is some 30-35 kilometres is around 100 km of Russia's new state-of-the-art Arctic port of Sabetta. It is in an area of crater-shaped lakes.

A mound of land along edges of the funnel confirms the fact of the explosion, Alexandr Sokolov said.
'This plot of land was absolutely flat just two years ago. A year ago in 2016 it bulged and we could see that soil has cracked there'


Image


Methane Explodes Under Yamal Tundra, Creates Another Sinkhole

Reindeer herders in the area of Seyakh, a village on the eastern coast of the Yamal Peninsula in the morning of June 28th reported the incident to the local authorities. They say that they from the distance saw flaring flames and a column of smoke from the area, TASS reports.

It is not the first explosion of its kind. Over the last years, several major methane blasts have occured in the gas-rich peninsula. In 2014, a major sinkhole was discovered not far from Bovanenkovo, the area which houses one of Russia’s biggest natural gas fields. That has a diameter of up to 60 meters.

There are at least ten known sinkholes in the Yamal Peninsula, as well as about 250 lakes and numerous offshore structures which indicate similar phenomena, Interfax reports.
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby Cog » Tue 04 Jul 2017, 06:58:39

Sounds like we are going to have a lot of natural gas for decades to come.
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby jedrider » Tue 04 Jul 2017, 12:48:44

Death by Acne. Oh, the horror!
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby vox_mundi » Wed 13 Sep 2017, 10:00:55

Video Shows Methane Leaking from Beneath an Arctic River after Spectacular Eruption

Image

Video - The video shows Dr Anton Sinitasky, director of the Arctic research Centre in Yamalo-Nenets region, in a small boat measuring gas - previously trapped in the frozen permafrost ground - which continues to leak from under the murky waters.

The scientist said: 'I can confirm that there was really a fire burning over the Seyakha crater. We need to rely on the words of eyewitnesses. It lasted for one or one-and-a-half hours. 'When the power of gas jet began to decrease, the burning stopped. 'But the methane continues to leak from the crater, so we have been able to take samples.'

The Seyakha eruption is the most recent of a series of crater formations recently noticed in northern Siberia. It was the only one witnessed at close hand by humans. Some 700 sites in the region are reported to be vulnerable to eruptions.

The phenomenon is seen as highlighting the release of greenhouses gases due to thawing permafrost which under relatively recent global warming capped the methane beneath the surface.

A key concern is the impact of such eruptions on industrial facilities including pipelines in the Yamal region, one of the world's largest natural gas supply locations.

'We have gathered some charred sand and grass from Seyakha, but actually no analysis is needed to confirm what is obvious: there definitely was burning. - Video

Image
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby chilyb » Wed 13 Sep 2017, 11:54:01

melting permafrost in Tibet:

https://www.facebook.com/KyaikmayawMudo ... =2&theater

sorry if OT for this thread. But would love to hear people's thoughts, especially from a geologist.
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby vox_mundi » Wed 13 Sep 2017, 12:44:03

Seems Similar: Climate-driven Arctic permafrost thaw will dramatically alter northern landscapes: study

Image
Large thaw slump on the Peel Plateau, NWT, Canada. The slump is almost 1 km wide and has displaced over 7 million cubic metres of materials over the past two decades.

... These features are becoming very large and they’ve grown particularly rapidly over the last 20 years driven by climate change, Kokelj said.

Some of these thaw slumps in the Mackenzie Delta region occupy an area of 20 to 30 hectares and they’ve displaced millions of cubic metres of materials, Kokelj said.

“And we have good evidence that this is not something that has been common in the last 100 or 1,000 years,” he said.

Image

The one in Tibet seems to be moving a bit faster.
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby Plantagenet » Wed 13 Sep 2017, 13:18:24

There are also a lot of these in Alaska, including one creeping down a mountainside towards the "Haul Road" that connects the Prudhoe Bay Oil Fields with the outside world and the Trans Alaska Oil Pipeline that runs from Prudhoe down to Valdez.

At current rates of motion it will take years to reach the road and pipeline---but its a-coming.

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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby dohboi » Wed 13 Sep 2017, 13:39:40

I think vox or I may have shared this in another thread, but it seems relevant to the larger context of this thread (and to other recent posts here):

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-017-00669-3

tipping of cold regions now locked in.

“…Even with the most optimistic CO2 emissions scenario (Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) 2.6) we predict a 72% reduction in the current periglacial climate realm by 2050 in our climatically sensitive northern Europe study area. These impacts are projected to be especially severe in high-latitude continental interiors. We further predict that by the end of the twenty-first century active periglacial LSPs will exist only at high elevations. These results forecast a future tipping point in the operation of cold-region [land surface process], and predict fundamental landscape-level modifications in ground conditions…”
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Re: Huge pits forming in Arctic permafrost

Unread postby Plantagenet » Wed 13 Sep 2017, 14:31:36

dohboi wrote:we predict a 72% reduction in the current periglacial climate realm by 2050...


My town cabin is on a sunny south-facing hillside with no permafrost. Global warming is just going to make nicer.

Many other people living in permafrost zones in Alaska, Canada, etc. aren't so lucky. When permafrost melts right under your house it can get very ugly---even worse then hurricane damage because you can't ever rebuild because the ground is still thawing.

Image

Image

Image

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