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Насколько вечная мерзлота поможет потеплению?Recent authoritative assessment of the amount of carbon associated ground in permafrost areas, was made in 2009 and called the figure 1.6 trillion tons. However, this work was not complete, it was based only on the 45 analysed points soil testing and practically did not include main global permafrost region - North Asian part of Russia.

A new study presented at the recent conference of the American geophysical Union Gustav Hegelism (Gustaf Hugelius) from Stockholm University (Sweden), a few more representative than it took into account data at 405 points in the Northern hemisphere and speaks about the presence in the permafrost at depths of up to three meters 1.9 trillion tons of carbon.

These numbers are very important in view of the developments in recent years in the Arctic and adjacent areas, where long dominated permafrost. Carbon stayed there from other eras, when at the latitude of the Northern part of the New Earth grew inspiring respect for forest and generally full of life. The new estimate says that all can return to their seats. Indeed: as soon as permafrost leave a particular area, in the soil begin to actively multiplying bacteria that oxidize carbon and prints it from the bound state in gaseous form. This process starts effective feedback: the increase in carbon dioxide enhances the greenhouse effect and further thawing of permafrost, then history will repeat itself.

According to the modern experiments, for half a century after thawing soil allocates thus in the atmosphere of about 20% of the stored carbon. If the assessment 1.9 trillion tons is correct, it is a fact that until the year 2100 emissions "permafrost" dioxide emissions can be much greater than the total anthropogenic emissions during the same period, seriously exacerbating the problem warming.

However, despite significantly higher sampling, a new study still weakly affects a core area of permafrost in Siberia. Siberian permafrost goes further South than in North America, so the content of carbon in their soil is much higher because the permafrost in Asia is much more recent and binds the soil areas where in the geologically recent past it was warm. Because it higher content of organic materials than in North America.

On the whole, the permafrost is divided into two groups. The first is the peat soils of former marshes formed for the last 10 thousand years. The second type of permafrost soil - called "Edom" is typical mainly for sub-Arctic plains of Eastern Siberia. It Quaternary loess sediments containing 50 to 90% of ice. Rich in organic substances Siberian yedoma is more than a million square kilometers and contains on weight from 2 to 5% of carbon, which is about 10 times higher than in nemerson soils.

According to current estimates, accumulation of carbon in Edom approximately 500 billion tonnes, while under a layer of other species of the Siberian permafrost buried only 400 billion tons. While in the atmosphere today in structure of the carbon dioxide contained only 730 billion tons of carbon. Thus, in the perennial permafrost one of Siberia carbon more than in the whole of the Earth's atmosphere.

Based on the materials ScienceNOW.
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