Here's a strange good news/bad news story. This Sunday the top story on the front pages of the Los Angeles Times was a full-scale feature, complete with excellent graphics, on methane released by the softening of the permafrost.
The good news is that the newspaper is still covering the climate beat in a serious way.
The bad news is that the balance in our climate is tipping towards rapid warming.
No point in me encapsulating a first-story; as they say, read the whole thing.
But I will make a couple of points. First, I like the way the writer Margot Roosevelt explicitly sourced the metaphor of methane as a "time bomb" to reputable researcher Katie Walter. This is a term of art in the reporting on methane, but folks new to the story may not realize how factual that metaphor is.
Second, I love the personality she allowed us to see in Walter and her story. As Chris Mooney has said more than once, this issue cannot escape the back pages of science reporting until scientists are seen as individuals — and even, in some cases, as "rock stars." Roosevelt makes that happen with Walter.
Plus, here's a video feature featuring the star herself…great work, congrats to all concerned.