Greenland Wildfire

  • Thread starter BillTre
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The largest known wildfire ever seen in Greenland (since 2000) was found by satellite.
The area (recently melted tundra) had undergone scrubification (shrubs were growing) in addition to lichels, mosses, of the tundra.
Apparently, the color of the smoke indicates peat (melted out from the permafrost) is burning.
It may have been human started.

Peat it seems is a carbon sink (I guess during the continuous process of its formation), but not when its burning.
Perhaps the flames will consume the heat trapping methane molecules to form the less bad CO2 that is expected to be released from melting permafrost, but the heat might locally speed melting. Now there's a benefit.


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Apparently the fire either got put out and restarted, or being a peat fire never really got put out.
Small NASA article here.

Peat fires can smolder underground for a while and be difficult to put out.
My parents used to live in Northern Michigan (the UP; Upper Pennisula). Some camper once started a fire on an island (maybe 100 x 200 feet in size), largely made of peat, on the lake they lived on. It took a long time for it to get put out, even though it was only about 10-15 feet above the lake's water line (and therefore the water level in the soil) and surrounded by water.
How actually difficult is it to strip the Hydrogen out of bio-matter ? leaving Carbon behind.

Guess, it's a bit too late to put a megaproject windfarm all around the coast of Greenland (highest consistent windspeed in the world, but that's probably a direct result of being covered in ice)


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How actually difficult is it to strip the Hydrogen out of bio-matter ? leaving Carbon behind
Naturally - millions of years. And then you have coal.
There are some fairly cutting edge technological solutions for stripping hydrogen out of liquid and gaseous hydrocarbons. (e.g. platinum and steel membrane technologies) that were once contemplated as being the basis for widespread fuel cell economies. Although the latter may not come to pass anytime soon, the technologies are interesting and are currently in use in defense applications, particularly U.S. military submarines.

I know not exactly what you were getting at, but it is at least in the same neck of the woods conceptually. Maybe the a modified engineering development might develop for this application.


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