Arctic fires, thawing permafrost pose growing threat to climate
Source (The Hindu)
- The warming Arctic tundra will increase efforts to curb climate change, as thawing permafrost and wildfires release greenhouse gases that are not fully accounted for in global emissions agreements
- As temperatures rise and permafrost thaws, carbon dioxide and methane trapped within the long-frozen soil are released. The deeper the thaw, the more gas is released.
- That threatens to create a feedback loop that contributes to even more warming of the atmosphere
- Siberia saw its highest-ever recorded temperature last summer, when the far north town of Verkhoyansk hit 38℃.
- unprecedented wildfires in the region released about 35% more carbon dioxide than in 2019, which saw the highest emissions from Russian fires since 2003
- More research is needed to measure the emissions coming from permafrost
- Policymakers need to be pursuing deeper emissions cuts
- Multilevel and Global Cooperation
- Establish a permafrost monitoring system to issue that early warnings of rapid thaw like a step taken by Russia
Permafrost is ground that continuously remains below 0°C (32°F) for two or more years, located on land or under the ocean. Permafrost does not have to be the first layer that is on the ground. It can be from an inch to several miles deep under the Earth’s surface. Some of the most common permafrost locations are in the Northern Hemisphere
- The Arctic Council is a high-level intergovernmental forum that addresses issues faced by the Arctic governments and the indigenous people of the Arctic.
- The eight countries with sovereignty over the lands within the Arctic Circle constitute the members of the council: Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden, and the United States. Outside these, there are some observer states