Oregon Still Burning | Earth Observatory NASA

On July 26, 2013, thunderstorms passed over southern Oregon, and lightning ignited dozens of difficult-to-control wildfires. Persistently dry weather since the beginning of 2013 had primed forests to burn, and nearly all of southern Oregon was in a state of severe or moderate drought. In early August, forecasters were expecting the situation to worsen.

On August 5, 2013, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on Aqua captured the top image, which shows smoke rising from the Douglas Complex fire and the Big Windy Complex fire in southern Oregon. To the south, the Salmon River Complex fire and Orleans Complex fire burned in northern California. Red outlines indicate hot spots where MODIS detected unusually warm surface temperatures associated with fire. The bottom image, a photograph taken by Marvin Vetter of the Oregon Department of Forestry, shows a burning front within one of the Douglas Complex fires on July 26, 2013.

The Douglas Complex, which initially consisted of more than 54 separate fires, was burning northwest of Grant’s Pass, through forests managed by the Douglas Forest Protection Association. To the west, the Big Windy Complex fires burned in forests managed by the Oregon Department of Forestry. The fires in northern California, likely caused by human activity, burned in Klamath National Forest.

The fires were situated in extremely rugged terrain that hampered firefighting efforts. Approximately 3,000 firefighters were battling the Douglas Complex fires, including the National Guard. About 1,000 were fighting the Big Windy fires. The Douglas Complex was 16 percent contained as of August 6, 2013. Collectively, the two fires had burned nearly 50,000 acres (20,200 hectares).

While the fires have not yet destroyed homes, they have forced evacuations and the closure of some roads. Smoke lingered in the valleys, posing a health risk to people. To counter the smoke, the Red Cross distributed 20,000 respiration masks in southern Oregon.

By August 6, a total of 817 wildfires had burned 144,688 acres (58,553 hectares) in Oregon. In all, 2.5 million acres had burned across the United States, below the national average. Over the past decade, an average of 4.5 million acres burned in the United States by the first week of August.

References and Further Reading

NASA Earth Observatory image courtesy the LANCE/EOSDIS MODIS Rapid Response Team at NASA GSFC. Caption by Holli Riebeek. Photograph by Marvin Vetter, Oregon Department of Forestry. Caption by Adam Voiland.

Views: 543

Comment

You need to be a member of Ashland Source Center to add comments!

Join Ashland Source Center

Comment by Ellen Francine Fields on August 8, 2013 at 10:20am

Wow! The smoke goes on...

Ecology News

Ireland to Plant 440 Million Trees in 20 Years to Fight Climate Change | EcoWatch

Ireland will plant 440 million trees by 2040 as part of its efforts to combat the climate crisis.

Norway Becomes World’s First Country to Ban Deforestation | EcoWatch

Norway has become the first country to ban deforestation. The Norwegian Parliament pledged May 26 that the government's public procurement policy will be deforestation-free.

We Have Five Years To Save Ourselves From Climate Change, Harvard Scientist Says | Forbes

The level of carbon now in the atmosphere hasn't been seen in 12 million years, a Harvard scientist said in Chicago Thursday, and this pollution is rapidly pushing the climate back to its state in the Eocene Epoch, more than 33 million years ago, when there was no ice on either pole. "We have exquisite information about what that state is, because we have a paleo record going back millions of years, when the earth had no ice at either pole. There was almost no temperature difference between the equator and the pole," said James Anderson, a Harvard University professor of atmospheric chemistry best known for establishing that chlorofluorocarbons were damaging the Ozone Layer.

Scientists Keep Warning About The Dangers of 5G; Will We Listen? | Gaia

Over 180 scientists and doctors in almost 40 countries are warning the world about 5G health risks. “Resolution 1815 of the Council of Europe” spells it out quite succinctly: “We, the undersigned scientists, recommend a moratorium on the roll-out of the fifth generation, 5G, until potential hazards for human health and the environment have been fully investigated by scientists independent from industry. 5G will substantially increase exposure to radio frequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF)… and has been proven to be harmful for humans and the environment.”

Humans Are Speeding Extinction and Altering the Natural World at an ‘Unprecedented’ Pace | The New York Times

Humans are transforming Earth’s natural landscapes so dramatically that as many as one million plant and animal species are now at risk of extinction, posing a dire threat to ecosystems that people all over the world depend on for their survival, a sweeping new United Nations assessment has concluded. The 1,500-page report, compiled by hundreds of international experts and based on thousands of scientific studies, is the most exhaustive look yet at the decline in biodiversity across the globe and the dangers that creates for human civilization. A summary of its findings, which was approved by representatives from the United States and 131 other countries, was released Monday in Paris. The full report is set to be published this year.

© 2019   Created by Ashland Source Center.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service