Photo detail

This map shows anomalous U.S. methane emissions (or how much the emissions differ from average background concentrations) for 2003 to 2009, as measured by the European Space Agency’s SCIAMACHY instrument. Purple and dark blue areas are below average. Pale blue and green areas are close to normal or slightly elevated. Yellows and red indicate higher-than-normal anomalies, with more intense colors showing higher concentrations. The Four Corners area – the area where Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah meet – is the only red spot on the map. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Michigan)

Stories this photo appears in:

Tease photo

Methane hotspot over Southwest surprises researchers

Data suggests that previous estimates were very inaccurate