The gas is produced as life decomposes, on land or in the ocean. That's nature. Now, however, as the ocean's ice cover thins and recedes, more and more carbon dioxide mixes into the open water, lowering its pH level. Ocean water is becoming more acidic. Many forms of ocean life cannot survive the lower pH. As life dies and sinks to the ocean floor, it becomes food for anaerobic ("without air") bacteria which produce sulfur.
The result is poisonous hydrogen sulfide gas. A few minutes of exposure is deadly to animal life, including humans.
And the kicker is: because ocean waters are layered by temperature (colder at bottom, warmer near the surface), the gas can accumulate for years in the ocean depths, then suddenly be released in a planetary "sulfur burp."
Such a release would be the end of human life, and many other life forms. It would take a very long time for life to recover.
Our ancestors were experts at change. They knew how to adapt. They knew to listen, observe and act in accord with the conditions around them -- at one with the environment.
Climate change from our carbon output is the biggest challenge homo sapiens has faced in several million years. It isn't something you can make disappear by declaring it to be "unpopular." But there's a lot we CAN do.
Much remains to be explored in our earth and its oceans. We need science education and scientists now more than ever. We can explore our neighboring planets and moons even more, gathering information and founding human settlements. If we must dig, excavate and build (and of course we must!), why not do it on Mars, and the Moon, and preserve our life-giving forests and waters here on Mother Earth.
Every small step matters in this fight. I see kids on my block who are driven to and from their school just three blocks away. Traffic seems to peak during school arrival and dismissal times. Teachers, administrators, parents, family --lead by example -- walk, bike, take public transportation.
Get outdoors more. Out of the human-built habitat.
If you must drive, think slow. The slower you drive, the less fuel is burned;
and the less fuel burned, the less carbon dioxide is made;
and the less carbon dioxide, the better for the oceans;
and for our descendants and all creatures 1,000 years from now in this great chain of life.
Happy Mother's Day.