Flammable Ice

'Japan could finally have an energy source to call its own.'

Takami Kawamoto, spokesman for the Japan Oil, Gas & Metals National Corp., after scientists extracted gas from deposits of methane hydrate--known as flammable ice--in the Pacific Ocean. Unlike other major industrial nations, Japan has never had a significant domestic energy source. The country is the world's largest importer of liquefied natural gas. Some experts estimate that the amount of carbon in gas hydrates could be twice that of the world's other fossil fuels.


Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!