| Post

Melting permafrost in record heat in Arctic damages Russia’s oil & gas network causing oil spill

NPS Climate Change Response NPS Photo (C.Ciancibelli)
NPS Climate Change Response NPS Photo (C.Ciancibelli)

by Chanan Bos, Clean Technica


Many of Russia’s oil wells are built on permafrost, a layer of frozen soil, sand, and gravel. This permafrost is now melting quickly, jeopardizing the country’s oil supplies and accelerating climate change

  • The permafrost these oil wells are built on is considered contiguous, meaning it stays frozen for thousands of years. However, this year-round permafrost is melting for the first time at a rapid pace that scientists didn’t anticipate for another 30 to 80 years
  • The melting of permafrost releases carbon dioxide (CO2) trapped in the ice. The releasing of carbon can heat up more permafrost, resulting in more CO2 being released into the atmosphere
  • In the Siberian city of Norilsk, a storage tank of diesel owned by Norilsk-Taimyr Energy Co. collapsed, spilling 6,000 tons of oil into the ground and 15,000 tons into local bodies of water
  • The collapse is attributed to the failure of the supporting posts of the storage tank, likely due to the melting of permafrost
  • This has led Vladimir Putin to declare a state of emergency while the energy company involved is facing a criminal case of negligence for not reporting the spill 

The transition to 100% clean energy and electrification is a key to achieving the goals of The Climate Center’s Climate-Safe California Platform.

Read more: https://cleantechnica.com/2020/06/09/melting-permafrost-claims-its-first-major-victim-russias-oil-gas-network/