In this second episode of the methane miniseries, I speak to Professor Orjan Gustafsson from Stockholm University about his team’s ongoing collaboration with the Russian research team, led by Professor Igor Semiletov, investigating the Siberian Arctic.
Orjan has published over 80 research papers jointly with his Russian colleagues on their findings in the Russian Arctic over the course of more than a decade. In this episode, he highlights why understanding this region is among one of the most important research areas in climate change today.
Despite the complexity of geopolitics that often infects peoples thinking in dealing with Russia, the opportunities for scientific collaboration in pursuit of critical knowledge can, in the long run, prove more beneficial than any short term political aims.
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Interview contents by Timestamp[min:sec]|Subject
00:00 Overview of research programme looking at how carbon feedback processes work.
03:50 Degradation of subsea permafrost.
07:00 Different sources of methane.
09:00 Subsea permafrost not a risk?
11:30 Quantity of thermogenic methane.
13:30 Why this matters for policy.
14:40 Defining megaseeps.
17:00 Extrapolating estimates of megaseeps.
18:38 Is there a known countervailing force?
20:30 Is policy and rate of research in the area sufficient?
21:00 Is the Russian Presidency of the Arctic Council good for research?
21:50 Why what is happening in Siberia should be considered top scientific priority.
23:45 Slope hydrate vulnerability due to Atlantification of Arctic (warm inflow of water).
26:35 Russian Presidency a good opportunity for collaboration.
26:58 Research to be published in 2021.
27:38 New open access database live – CircumArctic Shelf Carbon database, “CASCADE”.
30:45 Science as diplomacy.
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