Methane Level In The Atmosphere Is Surging – What Could Happen?

By , in News World on . Tagged width:

Methane is a potent greenhouse gas, and according to experts, its presence in the atmosphere is surging.

The LA Times reported that twenty years ago the level of methane in the atmosphere stopped surging and this gave humanity a break when it came to slowing climate change.

Methane concentration has been growing over the past four years 

The concentration started to rise again back in 2017, and it has been picking up the pace over the past four years, says new research.

The cause is not known but it seems that one thing is obvious: This surge could reportedly imperil the Paris climate accord.

The reason is that many scenarios for meeting its goals have assumed that methane levels would be falling by now which would buy us some time in order to find a solution to tackle the challenge of reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

Experts find this rise of methane worrying, and a recent study has concluded that the growth of atmospheric methane is surging at a really fast pace.

Here’s how the LA Times puts it: “Methane is produced when dead stuff breaks down without much oxygen around. In nature, it seeps out of waterlogged wetlands, peat bogs, and sediments. Forest fires produce some too.”

“The hope was that methane would be starting on its trajectory downwards now,” according to Matt Rigby, an atmospheric scientist at the University of Bristol in England.

He continued and explained: “But we’ve seen quite the opposite: it’s been growing steadily for over a decade.”

Potential causes 

The growth also accelerated back in 2014 and scientists don’t have any idea why.

The prestigious online publication reports that scientists have come up with some potential explanations: “growing emissions from fossil fuels or agriculture? An uptick in methane production in wetlands? Changes in the rate at which methane reacts with other chemicals in the atmosphere?”

We recommend that you read the complete article on the Los Angeles Times.