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Posted Sun Feb 15 2009: from New Scientist:
Burp of Arctic laughing gas is no joke
It seems the Arctic['s melting permafrost] is belching out nitrous oxide -- commonly known as laughing gas. Unfortunately, the punchline is that it is a powerful greenhouse gas. Previously, emissions of N2O were thought to enter the atmosphere mainly from tropical forests and intensively managed farmland, with only a negligible amount from northerly environments.... Although this means N2O remains a small contributor to the greenhouse effect, compared with methane and carbon dioxide, the gas persists unaltered in the atmosphere for over 110 years, compared with around 10 years for methane -- which is also periodically released by the tundra.
[Read more stories about: permafrost meltdown, arctic meltdown, feedback loop]

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'Doc Jim says:
Yo! Permafrost! We're doing the punchlines around here!

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