Methane is a simple alkaline compound, which is an important part of natural gas. Its chemical formula is CH4 and it is a colorless and odorless gas. Methane burned in the presence of oxygen produces water and carbon dioxide. The symptoms of methane gas exposure are not seen, as soon as the person comes in contact with the gas. The symptoms take a certain amount of time before they are seen, as methane is less dense than air.
100-year global warming potential of methane is 28, while the 20-year global warming potential is 104. What this means is that in 100 or 20 years time, methane will trap heat 28 or 104 times more than CO2.
The global concentration of methane in pre-industrial times, i.e. from 1750 to 1850 is 722 ppbC, in 2011, this concentration has risen to 1800 ppbC, and 1850ppbC in 2018, Figure 1. Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) in 2011 set up 2 test stations in Denver and Platteville respectively, the result of the study shows an elevated concentration above the natural average in Denver from 2303 ppbC in 2157 and 2107 ppbC 2017. As bad as this may sound, the average concentration in Platteville is 2944 ppbC in 2011 and 2661 ppbC in 2017, Figure 2.