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Gaia's breath - Global methane exhalations

Marine and Petroleum Geology

By:
,
DOI: 10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2004.08.004

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Abstract

Methane (CH4) is the most abundant organic compound in the Earth's atmosphere, where it acts as a greenhouse gas and thus has implications for global climate change. The current atmospheric CH4 budget, however, does not take into account geologically-sourced CH4 seepage. Geological sources of CH4 include natural macro- and micro-seeps, mud volcanoes, and other miscellaneous sources such as gas hydrates, magmatic volcanoes, geothermal regions, and mid-ocean ridges. Macro-seeps contribute ???25 Tg (teragrams) CH4/yr to the atmosphere, whereas, micro-seepage contributes perhaps 7 Tg CH4/yr. Mud volcanoes emit ???5 Tg CH4/yr, and miscellaneous sources emit ???8 Tg CH4/yr to the atmosphere. Thus, the total contribution to the atmosphere from geological sources is estimated to be 45 Tg CH4/yr, which is significant to the atmospheric organic carbon cycle and should be included in any global inventory of atmospheric CH4. We argue that the atmospheric CH4 global inventory of the Interplanetary Panel on Climate Change must be adjusted in order to incorporate geologically-sourced CH4 from naturally occurring seepage.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Gaia's breath - Global methane exhalations
Series title:
Marine and Petroleum Geology
DOI:
10.1016/j.marpetgeo.2004.08.004
Volume
22
Issue:
4 SPEC. ISS.
Year Published:
2005
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
First page:
579
Last page:
590
Number of Pages:
12