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Methane bubble "doomsday" story debunked?

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posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 10:10 PM
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Information for debate and consideration:




For several days, bloggers and journalists have been passing around a news story about how the BP oil disaster will unleash a "giant methane bubble" and initiate a mass extinction. Yes, it's a myth. And we've busted it.

In this article, called "Doomsday: How BP Gulf disaster may have triggered a 'world-killing' event," a guy named Terrence Aym takes some information he got from a "Mega Disasters" TV special on undersea methane bubbles and mixes it with comments about how there are "giant rifts" beneath the sea and an "information blackout." He proposes that a "twenty mile methane bubble" dislodged by the BP oil disaster will erupt from the ocean floor, causing tidal waves and giant explosions. The sad part about all this is that news organizations and blogs took the story seriously. While it's true that there are methane bubbles (and methane ice) beneath the ocean floor, they are not about to erupt from Gulf and destroy all life on Earth.

This morning I spoke with two Earth scientists, Dave Valentine of UC Santa Barbara and Chris Reddy of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, who study methane and oil seeps from the sea floor. Valentine has just been out to the Gulf to study the methane levels there, and told io9:


io9.com...




posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 10:43 PM
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a pdf or 2 for your consideration:

Methane discharge from a deep-sea submarine mud volcano into the upper water column by gas hydrate-coated methane bubbles

www.eawag.ch...

Fate of rising methane bubbles in stratified waters: How much methane reaches the atmosphere?

www.eawag.ch...



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 12:28 AM
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The original story of methane causing the explosion was BS.

Methane compresses into a liquid above 800 PSI. What pressures have the so-called experts been touting in the media ? upwards of 50K PSI.



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 10:31 PM
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Wow. Not a single response. I guess no one here can de-bunk the debunking piece?

So, we are all in agreement that the whole methane bubble bursting ELE is not true?



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 10:53 PM
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Ok, this has been covered and recovered.

Pressure at 5000 ft bsl is about 2400 psi. Yes, the methane stays a liquid and/or frozen hydrate at that depth and temperature. This is a bad thing. BP estimates 40% of the leak is Methane. 85 days at a conservative 50k barrels per day = about 1.7M barrels, or 68 million gallons of liquified petroleum gas. This number is higher than all the lpg consumed in the US over an entire year. This has the potential energy of about 100,000 hiroshima sized bombs. Sources provided in the other 2 threads.

Now, that is just the potential from the leak. The Gulf is also known to have prehistoric frozen Methane Hydrate lakes as well.

Now, is it likely to explode at depth in the Gulf. No Way. So what is the concern?

The concern is that it drifts to shallower water lower pressures, and higher surface temperatures. It kills a bunch of sea life by depleting oxygen. It becomes a "super-saturated" suspension of gas in liquid, and then something disturbs it. Something like an explosion at the rig, or seismic activity, or a major storm. When a super-saturated suspension is distrubed, it changes state instantly. Millions of gallons of gas expanding to 4000 times its volume all at once. No need for an explosion, just the change of state will create the tsunami and oxygen depletion. But, if it does happen to ignite and explode, then we have the extinction level event.

Likely? I hope not!! Impossible? Not by a long shot!! It is a real concern, and it doesn't need bunked or debunked, it is simple fact-based science.

[edit on 13-7-2010 by getreadyalready]



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 10:59 PM
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www.aade.org...

Here is Haliburtons PDF on "Deepwater Cementing Consideration to Prevent Hydrates Destabilization". So we know the deepwater cementing didn't go as planned so there is a good chance of hydrates destabilization according to Haliburton.



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:01 PM
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reply to post by justadood
 


BTW, your two papers are concerning Methane accumulating over very long periods of time and accumulating in water, and then releasing to teh atmosphere by normal natural processes. Entirely different situation.

For the Record, I readily admit that all the talk of an undersea oil volcano, or a giant bubble of Methane, or a seafloor collapse are all crazy. The sea floor isn't going to collapse, and this isn't a volcano, it is an oil leak. The methane isn't a giant bubble, it is a solution of gas/water mixture, that is stable at high pressure and low temperature, but it is unstable at low pressure and high temerature. So, no problem at 5000 ft, but BIG problem closer to the surface.

Like all things on ATS, the craziest theories make the credible ones hard to recognize.



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:05 PM
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We all know the government is spreading this stuff, they run this dis-info to get it into the main stream and them BANG they set off a nuke and pretend it was a bubble lol and guess what no more welfare people in the southern states



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:06 PM
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getready-thanks for your replies. I started this thread not because i believe the article, but because i have no idea either way.

reply to post by theregonnakillme
 


so the government is spreading what now?

the story about the methane, or the story debunking the story about methane?



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:09 PM
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reply to post by justadood
 


OK, I read the other link. The IO9 one. I agree with everything they said, but it doesn't "debunk" the concerns that scientists on the coast have?

We are not claming extinction...yet. We are not claiming a single event will trigger a global killer. We are not claming that the Methane and de-oxygenation of the Gulf will doom the planet...yet.

We are claiming that the potential energy of this dissolved LPG is high enough to cause a tsunami and a massive explosion. We are claiming that sea life is already dying. We are claiming that the longer the leak goes, the higher the saturation level gets and the more likely the worst-case scenario becomes.

Fear-mongers like to take real science and then pervert it by keying on a single phrase, or the least likely scenario and exaggerating from there. The risk is real, unlikely for now, but real, and growin daily. The sealife death is already happening. Most of the carnage will never be seen, because dead sea life does not float up from 5000+ feet.



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:12 PM
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reply to post by justadood
 


the bubble, if people buy it then wham they hit you if not, plan B. Just like the North Korea incident, we the people did not buy it so they moved on. if we had the internet in the 1960 there would have been no way for them to start Vietnam.



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:15 PM
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reply to post by getreadyalready
 


So, basically you are saying that the information 'debunks' the more silly interpretations of the science, but doesnt actually disprove the possibility of a large amount of methane releasing and rising all at once?

Thats about how i read the OP article, at least.

Thanks for the replies.



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:21 PM
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ok folks - move along- nothing to see here, every things fine - no need for concern.
situation well in hand..ha -silly leak is all..



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:22 PM
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I always like it when the MSM or a paid group think tank "debunk" something partially. Pick one part and "disprove" that one thing and just present it like that is all there is to it.

I wonder how long til they have to start realizing that they need to stay ahead of the curve. That their tactics start to "teach" people, and that their million dollar think-tanks are being undone by keyboard warriors who do it in their spare time for nothing.

That's gotta sting. Millions spent on spin. Undone by people with logic and good writing skills while they dandle children on their knees.



[edit on 2010/7/13 by Aeons]



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:23 PM
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www.abovetopsecret.com...

Apacheman's thread has a lot of good science in it.

For an experiment on pressure and state. Buy a glass bottle of coke or root beer. It has to be glass, and beer doesn't work as well.

Now put it in the freezer overnight. It won't freeze. It can'[t freeze under pressure from the bottle and lid.

Take it out and open it and watch it freeze instantly. After you open the lid, and relieve the pressure, the entire thing changes state at one time!

Imagine a much more dramatic version of this experiment. DON"T TRY IT! But imagine if you had heated that bottle to several hundred degrees. It couldn't boil, because of the pressure, but as soon as you popped the lid, the entire thing would boil instantly, and you would have a whole room full of super-heated steam explode out of the neck of that bottle instantly!! Bye-bye face!

That is how people get burned by radiators on oveheating cars. They release the pressure on a radiator by removing the cap. 2 gallons of super heated water becomes several hundred gallons of steam blasting out at them in an instant!

Now imagine the Gulf as a giant radiator, and the cap being 5000 feet of sea water. Then something comes along and stirs up that water and the cap isn't on so good anymore. To make matters worse, instead of steam , we have a flammable gas and vapor that could potentially explode in addition to just expanding.

I hope that helps.



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:25 PM
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What an excellent description.



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:27 PM
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Originally posted by justadood
reply to post by getreadyalready
 


So, basically you are saying that the information 'debunks' the more silly interpretations of the science, but doesnt actually disprove the possibility of a large amount of methane releasing and rising all at once?

Thats about how i read the OP article, at least.

Thanks for the replies.


Exactly!


It debunks the idea that some giant bubble is down there waiting to explode like a volcano and kill the planet. It doesn't even address this creeping solution of lpg that is growing and dispersing throughout the Gulf. As long as it stays in solution, or seeps out over time and over a large area, we have no problem. If it becomes super-saturated in a relative small area surrounding the leak, and then it becomes disturbed, then we have a major problem.

Stop the leak, buy some time, and the problem goes away. nature is amazing. Don't stop the leak pretty soon, and see how amazing nature can really be when we piss her off!



posted on Jul, 14 2010 @ 08:17 AM
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Originally posted by Aeons
I always like it when the MSM or a paid group think tank "debunk" something partially. Pick one part and "disprove" that one thing and just present it like that is all there is to it.


[edit on 2010/7/13 by Aeons]


Well, to be accurate, i dont think this is the product of a 'think tank' or the 'msm'.

in fact, the MSM appears to be running with the methane bubble story because it is sensational. I saw a big story on it in HuffPo and on Fox the other day.

the "MSM" is actually fanning the flames of the more hysterical interpretations of the numbers. as usual.



posted on Jul, 14 2010 @ 09:50 AM
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yes, they look at online contributions of peoples concerns, play up the least sensible scenario and then prove that wrong. Then act like that's the end of it.

It's a straw man set up.



posted on Jul, 14 2010 @ 10:40 PM
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reply to post by Aeons
 


even with my limited understanding of the issue and the science behind it that seems quite obvious.

of course, perhaps some of the less reasonable among us might learn a lesson from this?


naaaaa

[edit on 14-7-2010 by justadood]



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