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Thursday, September 26, 2013

New Quake Created Gwadar Island Is Emitting Methane Gas

A new island that emerged just off Pakistan's sotherrn coast following the Tuesday 's earthquake is emitting methane gas. The 7.8 magnitude earthquake that killed hundereds of people and destroyed thousands of houses in Awaran district of Baluchistan. Its epicenter was 20 kilometers below the ground in Awaran district. The poerful earthquake caused the seabed to rise and create a new island 600 meters off the Pakistan's Gwadar coastline in Arabian sea. a man living near the coastline sent a text message to local journalist Behram Baloch, saying" a hill has appeared outside my house". The text message further said," I stepped out, and was flabbergasted, I could see this grey dome-shaped body in the distance like a giant whale swimming near the surface. Hundreds of people had gathered to watch it in disbelief." On wednesday, Baloch and some of his friends visited the island and took photographs. "It is an oval-shaped island which is 250- 300 feet ( 76-91 meters ) in length, and about 60 to 70 feet (18 to 21 meters) aboce the water." he said. " There were dead fish on the surface and on one side we could hear the hissing sound of escaping gas," Baloch said. Baloch and his friends put match to fissures from where gas was emitting and set it on fire. "we put fire out in the end, but it was quite a hassle. Not even water could kill it, unless we poured buckets over it," he added. Muhammad Danish, a marine biologist from Pakistan's National Institute of Oceanography, said a team of expets landed on the island Wednesday and found methane gas coming out. "our team found bubbles rising from the surface of island which caught fire when match was lit and we forbade our tean to start any fllame, it is methane gas" Danish confirmed. Rashid Tabrez, the director of National Institute of Oceanography said," the seabed near the Makran coast had vast deposites of gas hydrates, which has large methane contents'. "These deposites lay compressed under a sediment bed which is 300 to 800 meters thick,' he added. " When the plates along the fault-lines move, they create heat and expanding gas blasts through the fissures in the earth crust, propelling the entire sea floor to the surface," Tabrez said. He also said that the island emerged near Gwadar is the fourth one in this region since 1945.

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