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No. 4: July 1978

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Is the earth a giant methane reservoir?

T. Gold, of Cornell, theorizes that a vast reservoir of methane resides in the earth's crust -- a left-over from the formation of the earth. This accumulation of methane, he suggests, has been the major source of carbon at the surface throughout geological time. The existence of subterranean methane is manifested when flames shoot up during earthquakes. Tsunamis or tidal waves are probably caused by the release of immense bubbles of methane during quakes rather than by actual motion of the sea floor.

(Lewis, Richard S.; "Is the Earth a Giant Methane Store?" New Scientist, 78:277, 1978.)

Comment. Gold has also correlated offshore booms with sea-floor methane releases. More of his heretical thoughts on these matters are to be found in Section ESC in our Catalog: Anomalies in Geology. This volume is described here.

From Science Frontiers #4, July 1978. 1978-2000 William R. Corliss