Permafrost releases more greenhouse gases than predicted

Greenhouse gas emissions from thawing permafrost have been greatly underestimated in current climate models, according to new research conducted by a team of Canadian, US and French researchers.

The team studied and compared varying thaw ponds on Bylot Island in Canada’s Sirmilik National Park, looking at their physiochemical properties and microbial ecology.

The greenhouse gases have been sequestered in the permafrost for millennia, and are now being released as the ice thaws.

They found while the ponds cover 44% of the water-covered surface of the island valley, they contribute 83% of its methane emissions.

Read more at PLOS One