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Current Affairs

Arctic fires posing threat to climate

Date: 27 May 2021 Tags: Climate Change

Issue

A new study has found out that warming of tundra will melt permafrost and release green house cases, thereby increasing climate threat.

 

Details

  • The deeper the thaw, more greenhouse gases are released. Carbon dioxide and methane trapped within the permafrost is released during melting event.

  • This starts a feedback cycle in which the temperature further rises due to climate change and more gases will be released.

 

Role of wildfires

  • Siberia is the biggest victim of permafrost melting. The region witnessed unprecedented rise in temperatures.

  • Most important reason for the rise was the repeated wildfire event that increasing the heat and temperature of the region. It emitted 35% more CO2 than previous year.

  • While there is no clear evidence of permafrost thawing due to wildfires, the emission rate is likely to grow by 40% unless fossil fuel usage is reduced.

  • Countries of the Arctic are sure to discuss the challenge of permafrost melting during their Arctic council meeting.

 

Permafrost

  • Permafrost is the form of ground that remains frozen continuously for a period of two years. This phenomenon is most common in higher altitude and cold regions.

  • Permafrost currently holds twice the amount of carbon that is currently present in the atmosphere.