Relay: Hellholes in Siberia
In case you haven’t been paying attention to your regular enviro-news outlet, a few mysterious craters have popped up in Russia recently, with scientists initially baffled at what could have created them.
Now, these gaping holes aren’t nearly as
metal exciting as Turkmenistan’s (partially) man-induced “Door to Hell“, but they most certainly are troubling. While the general population’s quick to blame extraterrestrial species from beyond, scientists believe they’ve found out what’s been causing these holes to emerge.
Apparently, the lesions along the Yamal Peninsula are climate change catastrophes. When ice and permafrost melt, normally the water would sink down, causing an average sinkhole. However, Siberia’s vast amounts of underground methane gas paired with pressure amounted to hell breaking loose. Locals have been calling these pits “Dragon Mouths”, and rightly so.
What’s really scary about this is the amounts of methane being released into the atmosphere due to a climate that’s been radically increasing for decades now. Atmospheric methane is about twenty times as potent and detrimental than atmospheric carbon dioxide released from our cars and cattle. This trend could bring about some apocalyptic effects that would affect countless ecosystems, and jeopardize all forms of life worldwide.
One article speaks on a fern that was responsible for swapping excessive amounts of methane from the atmosphere with oxygen 50 million years ago. The difference between then and now would be natural methane levels versus human-generated ones, so there is question whether or not this plant can assist again as the Siberian permafrost continues to melt.
Oh, and if this giant holes appearing overnight isn’t enough for you, how about a body of water magically appearing in the middle of the desert?