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SOURCE: AAAS and Oregon State University

DATE: August 24, 2017

SNIP: In a new paper published in Nature, the researchers report two important findings regarding methane, a powerful greenhouse gas and large contributor to global warming:

First, the risk that warming will trigger methane release from large natural reservoirs of ancient carbon seems to be low.

Second, humans are probably contributing more methane to the atmosphere through fossil fuel use and extraction than scientists previously believed.

Reducing methane emissions from fossil fuels may therefore be an even more important factor in reducing global warming.

“Our results are suggesting that anthropogenic (man-made) fossil fuel methane emissions are even larger than previously thought,” Petrenko says. “This means we have even more leverage to fight global warming by curbing methane emissions from our fossil fuel use.”