As the world gets warmer, permafrost melts. This is the permanently frozen layer under soil in arctic regions of the world. As it melts, it releases greenhouse gases and is one part of the domino effect of climate crisis. NASA has pioneered a study to better help us understand this process.
There are some places where the melting of permafrost is very easy to track because we live there but much of where this damage is done is inaccessible to most people. Which means scientists can’t study it well. NASA used planes outfitted with Airborne Visible Infrared Imaging Spectrometers to capture information about these regions.
This information can tell scientists how much methane, the greenhouse gas that is emitted, and where this is happening. This can also clue us into what factors are making those releases possible. As more methane is released, it will speed up the climate crisis. Knowing what is happening will allow us to predict and plan for these changes.