Russia: fires continue to occur in Siberia, with record-breaking temperatures

Russie: les incendies se poursuivent en Sibérie avec des températures record

The fires continue to cause damage in Siberia, where summer temperatures reach record highs, but they have decreased in the past week, have announced Saturday, the Russian services in charge of forests, who fight by seeding clouds and using explosives.

Siberia has experienced since January of abnormally high temperatures in places which, combined with a low moisture content of the soil, has contributed to new lights after those who had devastated the region last summer, noted this week in the service of the european Copernicus climate change.

Since mid-June, the number as the intensity of wildfires have increased in the extreme North-East Siberia and, to a lesser extent in Alaska, according to Copernicus, resulting in the emission of 59 megatons of CO2 into the atmosphere, a record for this month since the start of measurements in 2003.

The air Service of forest protection of the Russian said that he struggled Saturday against 136 fire on 43 000 hectares of land, using explosives to contain the flames and trying to trigger the rain with the seeding of the clouds.

Most of the homes are, however, considered too distant and too costly to treat, with currently 333 000 hectares of fire to the total in areas where fire-fighting efforts have been halted, he said. This figure is, nevertheless, a clear decrease compared to the one reported here is a week by the service which was more than two million hectares.

Since mid-June, the regions located in the far North and beyond the arctic circle have recorded record temperatures unprecedented.

The highs are much more frequent and difficult to predict, causing temperatures to rise and sunshine, had explained at the end of June to journalists in Moscow, Roman Vilfand, head of the meteorological agency Russian. “This is the main problem and one of the consequences of climate change,” he estimated.

The satellite images on Saturday showing that the main fires still reign in Yakutia (eastern Siberia) which borders the Arctic ocean. The region has declared a state of emergency on July 2 as a result of fires.

The control service of the forests of Greenpeace in Russia, which is based on data collected by satellite, said Saturday that 9.26 million hectares in total, or more than the area of Portugal, had been affected by fires since the beginning of the year.

The organisation for the defence of the environment decries the lack of funding for the department in charge of the maintenance of forests which may not ensure adequate prevention of fire.

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