Skip to content
For WHOI personnel and vendors: COVID-19 Guidelines

Climate & Ocean


Experiments Reveal How Permafrost Carbon Becomes Carbon Dioxide

Eos - Earth and Space Science News

Permafrost has been frozen for far longer than humans have been on the planet. That’s a good thing because permafrost contains over a trillion metric tons of organic carbon deposited by generations of plants, and all that carbon remains locked up when it’s frozen. “But now, because of human activity, it’s starting to thaw,” said Collin P. Ward, an aquatic geochemist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Woods Hole, Mass. “The big concern here is what’s going to happen to all of that organic carbon.”