Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, at a government meeting held last Friday via video link, raised the issue of finding a solution to the long-standing problem associated with a burning gas crater in Darvaza.
Addressing Vice-Chairman Shakhym Abdrakhmanov, the head of state noted that a huge amount of gas has been burning in the Darvaza region for many years, and this circumstance negatively affects both the environment and the health of people living nearby.
Thus, raw materials are lost, for the export of which one can make significant profits and use them to improve the well-being of our people, the President emphasized.
In this regard, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov instructed the Vice-Chairman to gather scientists, and, if necessary, attract foreign consultants and find a solution to extinguish the fire.
According to media publications, back in 1971, near the settlement of Darvaza in the Turkmen SSR, Soviet geologists discovered an accumulation of underground gas. As a result of drilling an exploration well, geologists stumbled upon an underground cavity (void), into which the upper layers of the soil then collapsed and a large hole filled with gas was formed. The drilling rig with all the equipment and transport fell into the resulting hole. People were not injured in this incident.
Geologists set fire to the hole to avoid gas poisoning of people and livestock, hoping that over time, the fire will subside. But the gas escaping from the ground continues to burn to this day. The diameter of the gas hole is 60 meters, the depth is about 20 meters.
Considering the significant scale and the rarest uniqueness of this crater, it may be advisable to combine the knowledge, experience and efforts of geologists, gas workers and other specialists from around the world in order to jointly find a solution to eliminate this man-made anomaly.