Siberia’s wildfires are not decreasing.
The area of existing forest fires reached 4.5 million hectares, compared to 4.3 million on Monday. “The size is now hardly manageable. The fire is already too big”
The situation could potentially turn dangerous for local populations, as fires could develop unpredictably towards inhabited areas. Even from a far distance, exposure to smoke could pose a danger to health, the expert said.
Smog has prompted several regions to declare states of emergency and smoke has blown across major cities like Novosibirsk, blotting out the sun and making it difficult for some people to breathe.
The wildfires are not just having an impact on the ground. They release harmful pollutants and toxic gases into the atmosphere. Thick smoke is visible on satellite images and distinguishable from every-day clouds across vast areas of the Arctic. Nasa has traced the megatons of harmful particles in that smoke – and where they have gone.