Results of examining the soil damage caused by natural hydrogen seeps by a team of pedologists from the Moscow State University were published in the Eurasian Soil Science journal, 2013, Vol. 46, 2, pp 135-144 . Original text was published in Russian in the journal Pochvovedenie: Почвоведение, №2, 2013, с. 152.
Abstract of the article:
The exhalation of hydrogen out of the earth’s deep sediments in the areas usually confined to tectonic fractures has been investigated. In places of hydrogen exhalation, ring-shaped structures of subsidence are formed. They are well identified on satellite images. The concentrations of molecular hydrogen measured in the field exceed to a great extent its probable production in soils. The soils influenced by two factors—a flux of molecular hydrogen and temporary waterlogging—are shown to degrade rapidly. The humus content decreases by 2–3 times; the optical density of the humic acids drops significantly; and the humus distribution, according to the morphological features, points to its high mobility. On the whole, hydrogen emissions inhibit the microbial activity resulting in a drastic decrease of the total microbial biomass and a greater contribution of bacteria to its structure. In a model experiment with hydrogen passing through a soil column, the bleaching of the soil by 2% and some reduction in the optical density of the humic acids were recorded.
Interesting, that the satellite imagery, made a month after our visit, shows the traces of our stay in the Sselki area of the Lipetsk region: the car tires traces along the profile of hydrohen mesurements on the SW-NE direction, and traces of four pits done for soil studies: