The Weather Underground’s atmospheric scientist reports that:
“A heavyweight boxer in the climate change match is missing from the fifth climate assessment report released by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on Friday.
Permafrost, which is frozen ground that doesn’t melt during the summer, covers 24 percent of the land in the northern hemisphere. It also stores approximately 1.5 trillion tons of carbon – twice the amount of carbon currently in the atmosphere.
When the organic matter that makes up permafrost thaws, the carbon it contains becomes exposed to the elements, which can escape into the air in the form of heat-trapping gases with the potential to knock out efforts to slow down global warming with a one-two punch.”