Aeon’s featured videos are always stimulating and informative. This one is also eerily beautiful in time-lapse of sea stars and proboscis worms (and large numbers of tiny insect-like crustaceans) feeding on the corpse of a seal in the Arctic Ocean. The first thing, other than the visual eye candy, was to remind me that there has been a rich biodiversity of life in those cold, mineral-rich waters. The ocean is desert with its life underground you might say–hat tip to Neil Young. The second …

Deep Ecology Read more »

Recent pictures of methane bubbles in northern lakes are stunningly beautiful. We used to explain the familiar bubbles like these (but unfrozen of course) in an Alabama lake or in the bayou along the Mississippi coast as “swamp gas” – not “natural gas.” Same thing. Today’s “natural” gas is swamp gas from millions of years ago when plants and phytoplankton died and decayed into minerals and gases trapped in rock or as frozen hydrates. Swamp gas, then, is a energy-releasing carbon fuel. You can …

Swamp Gases in Cold Places Read more »