In May, as the temperatures in northern Sweden begin to creep to several degrees above freezing, scientists will once again descend on the squelchy peat of Stordalen Mire. They’ll tread across sagging wooden boardwalks, past clusters of clear plexiglass boxes placed among the cotton grass. Once every three hours during the mire’s short growing season, the lids on the boxes will close, allowing them to fill with methane — a powerful greenhouse gas — seeping up from the soil beneath. After 15 minutes, the gas will get sucked through a labyrinth of tubes into a nearby trailer for analysis.

 

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