BBC News - Methane release 'looks stronger' Scientists have uncovered what appears to be a further dramatic increase in the leakage of methane gas that is seeping from the Arctic seabed. Methane is about 20 times more potent than CO2 in trapping solar heat. The findings come from measurements of carbon fluxes around the north of Russia, led by Igor Semiletov from the University of Alaska at Fairbanks. "Methane release from the East Siberian Shelf is underway and it looks stronger than it was supposed [to be]," he said. Professor Semiletov has been studying methane seepage in the region for the last few decades, and leads the International Siberian Shelf Study (ISSS), which has launched multiple expeditions to the Arctic Ocean. The preliminary findings of ISSS 2009 are now being prepared for publication, he told BBC News. Methane seepage recorded last summer was already the highest ever measured in the Arctic Ocean.