Plumes of Methane gas appear over Bangladesh
One of the countries most vulnerable to climate change has also been revealed as a major contributor of methane, a greenhouse gas that’s about 80 times more potent in its first two decades in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide.
“It has the strongest sustained emissions we’ve seen to date where we can’t clearly identify the source,” said Stephane Germain, president of GHGSat Inc, which also picked up the plumes.
The emissions over Bangladesh are drawing attention. Its low elevation and high population density make it particularly vulnerable to extreme weather events and rising oceans. The country chairs the Climate Vulnerable Forum, whose 48 members represent 1.2 billion people most threatened by climate change.
Methane concentrations in Bangladesh likely originate from a combination of sources including paddy fields, landfills, leaky natural gas pipelines and coal stockpiles. Methane is a particular concern for those working to slow the pace of climate change. The gas is odorless and colorless, making leaks extremely difficult to detect.