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Fires in the region in 1997 released up to 2.7bn tons of carbon dioxide, the largest single release since records began in 1957, and equivalent of up to 40% of annual global emissions from burning fossil fuels, Dr Page told the Royal Geographical Society's meeting in London.
She said: "Tropical peatlands are vast stores of carbon that have accumulated over thousands of years. In a matter of months, peatland fires can liberate 1,000-2,000 years' worth of carbon.
Coalmines all over the world are on fire! Often started by lightning or spontaneous combustion, some underground fires have been smouldering for thousands of years. But over the last few decades there has been a huge rise in the number of uncontrolled fires burning in the world's coal seams and waste dumps - because of humans. And the total carbon dioxide released by these fires is thought to be equivalent to all the car exhaust gases in North America in one year!
The ruins of Centralia Pennsylvania no longer exists on some maps. The story began sometime in 1962 along the outskirts of town when trash was burned in the pit of an abandoned strip mine, which connected to a coal vein running near the surface. The burning trash caught the exposed vein of coal on fire. The fire was reported and thought to be extinguished but it apparently wasn't. The coal then began to burn underground. That was in 1962. For the next two decades, workers battled the fire, flushing the mines with water, excavating the burning material, backfilling, drilling again and again in an attempt to put the fire out or at least contain it. All efforts failed to do either. By the early 1980s the fire had affected about nearly 200 acres. An engineering study concluded in 1983 that the fire could burn for another century or even more and "could conceivably spread over an area of approximately 3,700 acres."
Underground coal fires are relentlessly incinerating millions of tons of coal around the world.
The blazes spew out huge amounts of air pollutants, force residents to flee their homes, send toxic runoff flowing into waterways, and leave the land above as scarred as a battlefield.
"A global environmental catastrophe" is how geologist Glenn B. Stracher described the situation.
Originally posted by motionknight
Nano technology could fix that prob, Nano will cause a technological revolution without precedent.
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