High above the Arctic Circle, in the Yamal Peninsula, temperatures are rising three times faster than anywhere else in the world. Thick layers of permafrost are thawing quickly, re-activating bacteria that have long been frozen in time. After decades of being buried beneath permafrost, a reindeer carcass resurfaces from the thawing ground. It releases an infectious microbe, bacillus anthracis. As this microbe reawakens it quickly multiplies and spreads in the warm temperatures, fatally infecting local people and livestock with the zoonosis known as anthrax.
Melting Permafrost and Sleeping Microbes