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Reply #6: Exactly. [View All]

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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-08-09 09:41 AM
Response to Reply #4
6. Exactly.
Edited on Tue Sep-08-09 09:43 AM by bemildred
It is my understanding that methane will oxidize in the atmosphere at normal temperatures. A big methane release would result over time in more CO2 and less O2 in proportion to the quantity of methane released. This is going on all the time. A big release of methane could throw a serious moneywrench into the already destabilized climate system, and nobody really knows what the exact consequences would be. I have seen theoretical discussions of the notion that the global anoxia during the Permian-Triassic extinction was in some form related to or caused by methane clathrate release.

This Wiki entry discusses some of this:
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