Damage from forest fires in Russia worse since accurate recording began, Greenpeace says
Russia has lost a record amount of forest area to burn this year since the precise record began two decades ago, Greenpeace said.
The fires have destroyed 18.13 million hectares (45 million acres) of Russian forests since the start of the year through September 16, surpassing the previous record of 18.1 million recorded in 2012, said the Moscow office of the environmental organization in an article, citing the country’s latest satellite monitoring data. .
Russia didn’t start using satellites to accurately monitor fires until 2001.
The area of forest destroyed by fires this year is equivalent to the size of the US state of Oklahoma.
Fires raged in Yakutia in Siberia, in the northwestern region of Russia in Karelia, in the central Volga region and elsewhere.
The smoke from the Yakutia fires was so extensive that researchers recorded – for the first time – smoke reaching the North Pole.
According to scientists, global climate change is responsible for the upsurge in forest fires in Russia in recent years.
Temperatures in northern Siberia showed monthly averages more than 10 degrees Celsius above average for the 29-year period from 1981 to 2010.