Comment on “Understanding the Permafrost–Hydrate System and Associated Methane Releases in the East Siberian Arctic Shelf”

Brett F. Thornton1,2, Marc C. Geibel2,3, Patrick M. Crill1,2, Christoph Humborg2,3 and Carl-Magnus Mörth1,2

1 Department of Geological Sciences, Stockholm University, 106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
2 Bolin Centre for Climate Research, 106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
3 Baltic Sea Centre, Stockholm University, 106 91 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract
The recent paper in Geosciences, “Understanding the Permafrost–Hydrate System and Associated Methane Releases in the East Siberian Arctic Shelf” by Shakhova, Semiletov, and Chuvilin, (henceforth “S2019”), contains a number of false statements about our 2016 paper, “Methane fluxes from the sea to the atmosphere across the Siberian shelf seas”, (henceforth “T2016”). S2019 use three paragraphs of section 5 of their paper to claim methodological errors and issues in T2016. Notably they claim that in T2016, we systematically removed data outliers including data with high methane concentrations; this claim is false. While we appreciate that flawed methodologies can be a problem in any area of science, in this case, the claims made in S2019 are simply false. In this comment, we detail the incorrect claims made in S2019 regarding T2016, and then discuss some additional problematic aspects of S2019.

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