Tweet from Dr. Jason Box, professor of glaciology at the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland, on 29 July 2014: 'If even a small fraction of Arctic sea floor carbon is released to the atmosphere, we're f'd'. Graphic: Brian Merchant / Vice

By Brian Merchant
1 August 2014

(Vice) – This week, scientists made a disturbing discovery in the Arctic Ocean: They saw "vast methane plumes escaping from the seafloor," as the Stockholm University put it in a release disclosing the observations. The plume of methane—a potent greenhouse gas that traps heat more powerfully than carbon dioxide, the chief driver of climate change—was unsettling to the scientists.

But it was even more unnerving to Dr. Jason Box, a widely published climatologist who had been following the expedition. As I was digging into the new development, I stumbled upon his tweet, which, coming from a scientist, was downright chilling.

Box, who is currently a professor of glaciology at the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland, has been studying the Arctic for decades. His accolade-packed Wikipedia page notes that he's made some 20 expeditions to the Arctic since 1994, and served as the lead author on the Greenland section of NOAA's State of the Climate report from 2008-2012. He also runs the Dark Snow project and writes about the latest findings in the field at his blog, Meltfactor.

In other words, Box knows the Arctic, and he knows climate change—and the methane plumes had him blitzed enough to bring out the F bombs. [more]

If We Release a Small Fraction of Arctic Carbon, 'We're Fucked': Climatologist



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