Climate change and global carbon cycle: Perspectives and opportunities
The relevance of methane hydrates research to broader societal themes is often framed in terms of methane’s role in the global carbon cycle and its potential contribution to future climate change. To date, investigations of these fundamental issues have remained largely disconnected from applied studies focused on locating natural gas hydrate deposits, developing production technologies, and analyzing and mitigating hydrate-related geohazards. The 2005 reauthorization of the 2000 Methane Hydrate Research and Development Act provides broad latitude for better integration of applied and basic research related to methane hydrates, the carbon cycle, and climate change through its direction “to assess and to mitigate the environmental impact of hydrate degassing.” This mandate includes sponsoring research that evaluates whether methane hydrate degassing triggered by either natural or anthropogenic perturbations will (1) contribute to global climate change and (2) release significant quantities of currently sequestered carbon to the ocean-atmosphere system. This article provides an overview of progress and challenges in these areas and sets the stage for future research on related issues under the auspices of the Methane Hydrate Act.
Additional publication details
|Publication Subtype||Journal Article|
|Title||Climate change and global carbon cycle: Perspectives and opportunities|
|Series title||Fire in the Ice: NETL Methane Hydrate Newsletter|
|Publisher||U.S. Department of Energy|
|Contributing office(s)||Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center|