Gulf Methane Levels 1 Million Times Above Normal Are Depleting Oxygen And Creating Marine Dead Zones

Thursday, June 24, 2010
By Paul Martin

by Tyler Durden
ZeroHedge.com
06/24/2010

Reuters is so not getting the administration’s latest round of taxpayer bail out funding when mainstream media comes knocking on Obama’s door looking for handouts. The media company has shockingly decided to release some of the truth about the biosystematic genocide currently happening in the Gulf: “As much as 1 million times the normal level of methane gas has been found in some regions near the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, enough to potentially deplete oxygen and create a dead zone, U.S. scientists said on Tuesday. Texas A&M University oceanography professor John Kessler, just back from a 10-day research expedition near the BP Plc oil spill in the gulf, says methane gas levels in some areas are “astonishingly high.” Luckily, America is gradually realizing that the entire food chain in the southeast is about to be turned around on its head, leading to a massive and unprecedented ecological disaster, which will certainly wipe out thousands of species and result in not only a surge in unemployment (that’s a given) but outright loss of life (at statistically significant levels), and the anger is mounting. Perhaps the one good thing to come out of the worst ecological disaster in world history will be the sudden, and jarring awakening from the generational slumber for most of America, and a long overdue overhaul of a broken political and economic system.

More from Reuters:

Kessler’s crew took measurements of both surface and deep water within a 5-mile (8 kilometer) radius of BP’s broken wellhead.

“There is an incredible amount of methane in there,” Kessler told reporters in a telephone briefing.

In some areas, the crew of 12 scientists found concentrations that were 100,000 times higher than normal.

“We saw them approach a million times above background concentrations” in some areas, Kessler said.

The scientists were looking for signs that the methane gas had depleted levels of oxygen dissolved in the water needed to sustain marine life.

“At some locations, we saw depletions of up to 30 percent of oxygen based on its natural concentration in the waters. At other places, we saw no depletion of oxygen in the waters. We need to determine why that is,” he told the briefing.

Methane occurs naturally in sea water, but high concentrations can encourage the growth of microbes that gobble up oxygen needed by marine life.

Kessler said oxygen depletions have not reached a critical level yet, but the oil is still spilling into the Gulf, now at a rate of as much as 60,000 barrels a day, according to U.S. government estimates.

“What is it going to look like two months down the road, six months down the road, two years down the road?” he asked.

No commentary necessary, suffice it to say we sincerely urge Whitney Tilson to hedge his BP holdings with at least a few puts.

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