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Methane released due to ‘global warming’ no danger, say scientists

Written by PSI Researcher, Myles & John O'Sullivan

Recent scientific studies on the behaviour of methane released into the environment contradicts climate science predictions about the gas as a global warming risk. gulf oil spillAnalysis of the impact of the terrible 2010 BP Gulf of Mexico oil disaster (picture right) and a study of peat bogs, shows climate scientists may be wrong to claim such “greenhouse gases” can cause catastrophic long term impacts.

For years computer models used by climate scientists have predicted alarmist outcomes if humans permit levels of “greenhouse gases,” such as CO2 and methane in the atmosphere, to rise.

Melting permafrost due to CO2-driven global warming is said to be one of the major dangers to humanity due to its release of greenhouse gases, which they claim causes a worrying “positive feedback” loop of warming.

In particular, it was believed the release of methane (CH4), along with CO2, would boost the warming feedback leading to “runaway” warming. But findings by experts studying global peat bogs, a main emitter of methane, shows that this particular scare story is not supported by the science.

Due to recent advances in scientific understanding of permafrost and the effects CH4 has on the atmosphere, there is no evidence to warrant concern about dangerous climate change.

Making the position plain in the renowned book ‘Peatlands and Climate Change,’ Maria Strack, of the International Peat Society, disavows the unfounded fears trumpeted among climate scientists. In fact, the best evidence shows peatlands will actually become a sink for any increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide, man-made global warming’s biggest “threat.” So rather than there being more CO2 escaping into the atmosphere, there will likely be less due to the increased uptake potential of further exposed peatland. 

permafrost

Strack reports, “Several studies have documented increased rates of C [carbon] storage as peat following surface permafrost degradation….Currently peat-lands globally represent a major store of soil carbon, a sink for carbon dioxide.”

It seems Nature may have its own inbuilt safety mechanism, after all. The eminent expert adds: “Thus in response to permafrost degradation peatlands are likely to become larger sinks for CO2.” [1]

[permafrost extent shown in purple in diagram:right] In short, if melting permafrost continues, as it has being doing steadily since the last Ice Age, then more carbon dioxide will be absorbed. This represents a massive natural buffer to any “tipping point” predicted by climate change doomsayers.

Mother Nature’s ‘Self-cleaning’ Mechanism?

So what else have independent experts been learning about methane, this most powerful “greenhouse gas”?

Well, it appears something good came out of the shocking BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill of April 20, 2010.  On that day eleven people lost their lives and an enormous fire burned for 36 hours before the rig sank and a vast quantity of hydrocarbons leaked into the Gulf of Mexico. But the tragedy afforded an opportunity for scientists to study the large scale release of methane first hand. And researchers found that Methane (CH4) released into the environment doesn’t act the way climate science models said it would. [2]

Calling the results “extremely surprising,” scientists from the University of California, Santa Barbara and Texas A&M University showed that methane gas concentrations in the Gulf of Mexico returned to near-normal levels only months after the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion.

Oceanographers John Kessler of Texas A&M and David Valentine of UCSB reported:

 “We were glad to have the opportunity to lend our expertise to study this oil spill. But also we tried to make a little good come from this disaster and use it to learn something about how the planet functions naturally. The seafloor stores large quantities of methane, a potent ‘greenhouse gas,’ which has been suspected to be released naturally, modulating global climate. What the Deepwater Horizon incident has taught us is that releases of methane with similar characteristics will not have the capacity to influence climate.”

So here the scenario of “catastrophic” global warming causing the melting of the Arctic permafrost, thawing the peat-lands and releasing yet more “dangerous” gases to poison the environment falls flat on its face. The true scenario is more likely that Nature has, for billions of years, evolved its own “self-cleaning” mechanism.

 [1] Page 59: http://www.peatsociety.org/sites/default/files/files/PeatlandsandClimateChangeBookIPS2008.pdf

[2] Reported in Science Daily (January 07, 2011); http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110106145436.htm

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Comments (4)

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    elkcub

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    Thanks, Myles. That is no doubt the source of the misquote John mentioned.

    It came in the form of a sarcasm by the blog author: “Who would have thought it? Not all the myriad teams of climate scientists, obviously, with their billions in research grants, their supercomputers and climate models. But then, a research paper that ends something along the lines of “we conclude that there is no danger, and therefore no need for further study” is not likely to lead to a grant renewal is it?”

  • Avatar

    elkcub

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    I read the attached reference (sciencedaily) and can’t find the statement “we conclude that there is no danger, and therefore no need for further study.”

    Do you have access to the original report where it was originally stated? First time I’ve ever heard a researcher say there is no need for further study about anything. 😉

    • Avatar

      jsullivan

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      elkcub, thanks for the heads up. That is a misquote and is now removed. Apologies for any confusion caused.

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