Kalimantan, Borneo  This false-colour PROBA-V image, captured on September 18, shows an abundance of smoke plumes over Kalimantan, the Indonesian part of the island of Borneo. In this area, fires are common in September and October as farmers burn agricultural and logging debris to clear the way for crops and livestock and to prepare the land for new plantings of oil palm and acacia pulp. This year, however, the fire season was more intense and the thick smoke caused schools to close, impacted air traffic and triggered health warnings from poor air quality (e.g. fine particulate matter). Moreover, the peat fires can linger for months, until the wet season arrives and are shown to emit lots of greenhouse gases (CO2 and methane).   Date: 18/09/2019   Resolution: 100m  fires Amazon, Brazil  The Amazon rainforest is the largest contiguous one in the world, with an area of about 6.7 million km2. The region is very important to the global climate system, being among others the world’s largest carbon dioxide sink. Human-driven deforestation of the Amazon rainforest has been a major concern during the last decades. Using the slash-and-burn technique, large areas of land are annually cleared during the dry season for logging and farming. However, during the 2019 dry season, the amount of rain forest fires dramatically increased. Using various satellite data, the Brazilian National Space Research Institute (INPE) observed more than 75,000 wildfires between January and August 2019. PROBA-V captured the large amount of forest fires at a near-daily scale, and here we present false-color images showing the situation over the Rondonia area in western Brazil on 4 August 2019 and 22 August. On 4 August, some ongoing fires are clearly visible by their smoke and ash plumes, while on the image of 22 August the burnt forests can be recognized as grey-black patchy areas that contrast with the dark red of the pristine rain forest.   Date: 04/08/2019   Resolution: 100m : amazon, rainforest, fires, inpe, carbon dioxide, logging, farming, rondonia, forest  fires Amazon, Brazil  The Amazon rainforest is the largest contiguous one in the world, with an area of about 6.7 million km2. The region is very important to the global climate system, being among others the world’s largest carbon dioxide sink. Human-driven deforestation of the Amazon rainforest has been a major concern during the last decades. Using the slash-and-burn technique, large areas of land are annually cleared during the dry season for logging and farming. However, during the 2019 dry season, the amount of rain forest fires dramatically increased. Using various satellite data, the Brazilian National Space Research Institute (INPE) observed more than 75,000 wildfires between January and August 2019. PROBA-V captured the large amount of forest fires at a near-daily scale, and here we present false-color images showing the situation over the Rondonia area in western Brazil on 4 August 2019 and 22 August. On 4 August, some ongoing fires are clearly visible by their smoke and ash plumes, while on the image of 22 August the burnt forests can be recognized as grey-black patchy areas that contrast with the dark red of the pristine rain forest.   Date: 22/08/2019   Resolution: 100m : amazon, rainforest, fires, inpe, carbon dioxide, logging, farming, rondonia, forest  Alaska  Alaskan wildfires has moved across the Brooks Range and onto the North Slope. Arctic Circle wildfires have been persistently above 2003-2018 average through July. A roughly estimated total area burned in Alaska this season as of Wednesday 24/07/2019, 2.06 million acres (832k ha). According to the European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecast, around 100 megatons of CO2 were emitted between 1 June and 21 July, or nearly as much as the CO2 emissions of Belgium as a whole in 2017. It is possible that not only forests are burned down but also peat land areas for the first time. That is crucial, because the fires on peat soils can continue for months.   Date: 23/07/2019   Resolution: 300m : alaska, fires, arctic, burn, forest, peat, soil 
The Pampas, Argentina  The fertile Pampas, grasslands located in northern Argentina, Uruguay, and southern Brazil, are frequently struck by wildfires, both from natural causes, such as lightning, and from man-made control, for agricultural purposes. Throughout December 2016 and early January 2017, many fires burnt over 30,000 km2 in the La Pampa and Rio Negro provinces. Several factors, among others strong winds, high temperatures, and dry conditions resulting from the preceding winter and spring seasons contributed to the devastation. Rain in late December helped firefighters regain control, while a few hot spots persisted in early January. This PROBA-V animation clearly show the pampas recovering from these wildfires. The first image, captured on 6 January 2017, shows the burnt areas as brown/blackish patches, while some of the wildfires’ smoke plumes are visible in light-blue. The PROBA-V 100 m image of 24 July 2017 visualizes the Pampas' recovery.   Date: 24/07/2017   Resolution: 100m : pampas, argentina, wildfires, lightning, agriculture  The Pampas, Argentina  The fertile Pampas, grasslands located in northern Argentina, Uruguay, and southern Brazil, are frequently struck by wildfires, both from natural causes, such as lightning, and from man-made control, for agricultural purposes. Throughout December 2016 and early January 2017, many fires burnt over 30,000 km2 in the La Pampa and Rio Negro provinces. Several factors, among others strong winds, high temperatures, and dry conditions resulting from the preceding winter and spring seasons contributed to the devastation. Rain in late December helped firefighters regain control, while a few hot spots persisted in early January. This PROBA-V animation clearly show the pampas recovering from these wildfires. The first image, captured on 6 January 2017, shows the burnt areas as brown/blackish patches, while some of the wildfires’ smoke plumes are visible in light-blue. The PROBA-V 100 m image of 24 July 2017 visualizes the Pampas' recovery.   Date: 01/06/2017   Resolution: 100m : pampas, argentina, wildfires, lightning, agriculture  California fires  California continues to be plagued by wildfires, including the Woolsey Fire near Los Angeles and the Camp Fire to the north of Sacramento. The latter already attained the unfortunate title of California’s deadliest fire on record, after blazing through more than 125 000 acres (500 km ²) and destroying thousands of structures, including the city of Paradise, in just a week. More than 50 000 people needed to be evacuated and around 60 casualties are reported. The on-going drought conditions, the rugged terrain and, in the first days, strong winds hampered the efforts of more than 8 000 firefighters that responded from nearly a dozen US states. In this image sequence, PROBA-V captures the conditions just prior to the fire outbreak of November 7th with clear and extensive smoke plumes on the following days.   Date: 11-2018   Resolution: 300m : california, fires, sacramento, paradise, smoke  fires California, USA  In 2017, the amount of wildfires in California has been much larger than in previous years. Until early December, almost 8,800 fires have burnt down about 5,400 km2, more than twice as California’s 5-year average. The large amount of wildfires are caused by a combination of dry conditions, maintained by a strong and long-lasting inland wind (Santa Ana), and more grassland and other vegetation that has grown during spring and summer as a result of a very wet preceding winter. The 100 m image of last Friday, 7 December, shows a number of large wildfires in the hills near Ojai, about 100 km northwest of Los Angeles, as red dots. The extensive smoke and ash plumes are transported over the Santa Rosa and Santa Cruz islands and further over the Pacific Ocean by the north-easterly winds. The Los Angeles urban area is visible in the image lower right part.   Date: 07/12/2017   Resolution: 100m : fires, california, ojai, santa cruz 
Napa, California  Fires broke out quickly this past weekend in northern California. Sixty mile an hour winds did nothing to help either quell or stop the runaway fires from jumping fire lines and decimating whole neighborhoods. Dry, hot conditions which have been problematic for much of the west coast this summer erupted into flames after a series of lightning strikes. October is always a difficult time in California for wildfires, but this year, the wildfire eruptions seem extreme even to the most seasoned Californian. The deadly combination of lightning, winds, and hot weather which dries the landscape into tinder is all it takes to set off a wildfire that will consume thousands and thousands of acres in just a few short hours. (source: NASA)   Date: 09/10/2017   Resolution: 100m : napa, fire, california, wildfires, coast  Portugal  At least 64 people were killed and dozens more injured after hot and windy conditions fanned a massive wildfire in central Portugal. Lightning is the suspected cause of the blaze, which began on Saturday afternoon and is burning in the forested Pedrogao Grande, about 150 km northeast of Lisbon. Wildfires are an annual menace in Portugal, but now it is the worst wildfire in decades! This week's highest temperatures in the area are expected to reach around 38°C and, together with windy conditions, could reignite fires already quelled. This image shows us a comparison between May 19th and June 20th, 2017.  A smoke plumes is visible at June 20th, while the dark-red patch in the middle part the image indicates the area that has been burned down by the fires.   Date: 19-20/06/2017   Resolution: 300m : portugal, lisbon, fire, forest, tragedy  Portugal  A huge wall of thick smoke and bright red flames towered over the tops of trees in the forested Pedrogao Grande area in Portugal, ~150 km northeast of Lisbon. A lightning strike was believed to have sparked the blaze, on 17/06/2017. Investigators found a tree that was hit during a "dry thunderstorm," the head of the national judicial police said. Some roads were closed as the wildfire spread out of control, destroying several fire engines. About 60 forest fires took hold on the night of 17/06/2017, with 1,700 firefighters battling to put them out. At least 61 people have died, most of them trapped in their cars by flames as treacherous wind drove the blaze beyond firefighters’ control. The dimension of this fire has caused a human tragedy beyond any in our memory. Portugal, like most of southern Europe, is prone to forest fires in the dry summer months. The country was hit by a series of fires last year which devastated more than 100,000 hectares of the mainland.   Date: 18/06/2017   Resolution: 300m : portugal, lisbon, fire, forest, tragedy  Sulfur Fire, Iraq  The 100 m false-colour image of 16 July 2016 shows us a burning sulfur plant in Mosul, Iraq.  The fire has been burning since June 25 2016. It produced a noxious cloud of sulfur-containing gases, that, according to local media reports (obtained through the FBIS), is creating a significant environmental and health hazard. Several people have died as a result of the fumes.   Date: 16/07/2016   Resolution: 100m : sulfur, iraq, fire, mosul, cloud, hazard 
Devastating fires, Chile  During its long dry season, south and central Chile are often struck by a thousands of forest fires. The previous season (2015-2016) brought more fires than the 1990-2000 average that is reported by the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). In the course of January this year, dozens of fires broke out, fuelled by a heat wave and strong winds. This triggered the Chilean President to declare a state of emergency in the affected areas on January 20, the evacuation of over 200 people in Pichilemu. The fires also burnt through commercial pine and eucalyptus forests and shrouded the nation’s capital of Santiago in a thick haze. In this false-colour image, captured by Proba-V on January 27, the massive smoke is clearly visible in an area to the south of Pichilemu. The Andes mountains, on the border with Argentina, provide for impressive contrast.   Date: 27/01/2017   Resolution: 100m : chile, fires, pichilemu, smoke, argentina, forest  Siberia wildfires  This image shows us extensive wildfires in Siberia. This exceptional image show how the smoke trails of wildfires over Siberia in July 2016. A state of emergency has been declared because of the large wildfires, with some 8,000 hectares of forest and tundra destroyed. Hot, dry weather in the Arctic means that during a 24 hour period some 1,000 hectares of tundra has been destroyed.   Date: 23/07/2016   Resolution: 300m : siberia, wildfires, smoke, forest, tundra  Madeira, Portugal  From August 9th to 16th, fires raged across the Portuguese island of Madeira, a popular Summer holiday destination. The Madeira fires, allegedly started by arson, killed four people and caused damages that reached even the island’s main city Funchal, displacing up to a 1000 people. It was extensively reported in international media and triggered Portugese authorities to request and receive support from other EU member states.   Date: 10/08/2016   Resolution: 100m : portugal, madeira, fires, funchal  Santa Barbara, California  Firefighters battling a growing wildfire near the Southern California coast got a small reprieve Friday night but were bracing for rising temperatures as an extreme heatwave threatened to roast the Southwest with triple-digit temperatures this weekend. The so-called Sherpa Fire — one of several active wildfires burning in 10 states on Saturday — more than tripled in size Friday in Santa Barbara County, and by Saturday afternoon and had scorched more than 7,811 acres, officials said.   Date: 17/06/2016   Resolution: 100m : fires, santa, barbara, california 
Kamchatka Peninsula  On this image of 07 June 2016, wildfires are burning on the west side of Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula and generating a lot of smoke.   Date: 07/06/2016   Resolution: 300m : kamchatka, peninsula, fires  Fort McMurray Fires, Canada  The 100 m false color image of 16 May 2016 shows a large wildfire (~at least 2,500 km²) in fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada that spread rapidly because of the strong, dry wind. The bright red pixels indicate the fire, while the accompanying smoke and ash plumes appear as light-blue.   Date: 16/05/2016   Resolution: 100m : fire, fort, mcmurray, canada  Wildfires Canada  While European media coverage is focussing on the crisis in Fort McMurray in Alberta province, fires are raging across other parts of Canada as well. The above 300 m PROBA-V image, from May 9, 2016, depicts fires to the east of Lake Winnipeg, near the border of Manitoba and Ontario. The large fire in the centre of the image affects Nopiming Provincial Park, the area to the west Beresford Lake up to southern parts of the South Atikaki Park Reserve and Lake Wallace, spanning more than 73 000 hectares on May 11, as reported by the Manitoba government. The plume of a smaller fire, that threatened homes and lodges in Whiteshell Provincial Park, is visible further south in the image, near Caddy and West Hawk Lakes. By contrast, the yellow-orange colours in the southwest partially depict the city of Winnipeg.   Date: 09/05/2016   Resolution: 300m : fires, canada, winnipeg, lake, ontario, manitoba  Perth, Australia  The 300 m false-colour image of 7 January 2016 shows smoke plumes resulting from a large bushfire south of Perth moving over the Geographe Bay and Indian Ocean. The smoke plumes cna be distinguished from clouds through the blue-grey taints.   Date: 07/01/2016   Resolution: 300m : perth, fires, australia 
Wildfires California, USA  The 100 m false color image of 4 august 2015 shows a large wildfire (~50 km²) in northeastern California that spread rapidly because of the strong, dry wind. The bright red pixels indicate the fire, while the accompanying smoke and ash plumes appear as light-blue. The light-green areas in the lower-right part indicate irrigated agricultural fields.   Date: 04/08/2015   Resolution: 100m : wildfires, california, usa  Wildfires Alaska, USA  A period with dry and hot weather during June caused numerous wildfires in Alaska. Potential fire fuels, such as spruce, hardwood, and tundra had dried out due to the persisting heat and strong wind. In southwest Alaska, nearly all fires were ignited by lightning. The fires extended in July 2015 due to near-record temperatures.  The 100 m false-colour image of 20 June 2015 shows various smoke plumes in southwest Alaska, with two plumes in the lower-right part – near the Stony River – being most prominent. The black-red area north of these plumes is the Yukoon-Koykuk Census Area, while the meandering Kuskokwim River can be seen from the upper-right to the lower-left part.   Date: 20/06/2015   Resolution: 300m : wildfires, Alaska, USA  Catalonia, Spain  Because of persisting heat and drought, several countries have been struggling with huge forest fires. After the US (Alaska, California) and Greece, now Spain has been struck by huge forest fires.  On 25 July 2015, several forest fires were incinerated in a region northwest of Barcelona. Especially near the town of Odena the fire spread rapidly and burned down more than 12 km2 within 24 hours, which forced about 1,000 people out of their homes. This PROBA-V false-color 300 m image of 26 July 2015 clearly shows the various blueish smoke plumes resulting from the fires.   Date: 26/07/2015   Resolution: 300m : forest fires, Catalonia, Spain  Wildfire, California (USA)  In June and July 2015, several wildfires have occurred in California. Some of these fires affected urban areas near San Francisco and Los Angeles, with houses and other objects being burned down and people being evacuated. The false color image below of 26 July 2015 shows the blueish smoke plume of a fire in the Sierra National Forest, northeast of Fresno (visible as the grey area in the lower-left part).   Date: 26/07/2015   Resolution: 300m 
Västmanland, Sweden  This 300 m image from 4 August 2014 shows the smoke plume of the largest Swedish wildfire in 40 years in the province of Västmanland (about 150 km northwest of Stockholm). The fire started at 31 July and lasted until 11 August, burning down an area of about 1,500 km² and forcing more than 1,000 people from their homes (source: Wikipedia  and Wallstreet Journal Online).   Date: 04/08/2014   Resolution: 300m : fire, Sweden  California, USA  On this 100 m image taken at 16 September 2014, a large smoke plume in northern California (Union Valley reservoir region) can be seen in the upper right part. The plume was caused by a wildfire, which doubled in size in just 12 hours. Thousands of people were forced to leave their homes. The wildfire – known as the 'King' – was the biggest of 11 fires, in what officials described as the worst wildfire season on record.   Date: 16/09/2014   Resolution: 100m : fire, America  Sumatra  An extensive smoke and ash plume, originating from various wildfires in the Riau province on Sumatra island, Indonesia,  is visible on this 300 m image of 20 June 2013. At the day of observation, the fires (reported to be hundreds of separate fires) already lasted for five days. A warning was raised by the Indonesian National Board for Disaster Management (BNPB) to neighbouring countries Malaysia and Singapore for the approach of chocking smog.   June is the start of the yearly forest fire season, when slash-and-burn techniques are used to clear land quickly and cheaply, often for palm oil plantations.   Date: 20/06/2013   Resolution: 300m : fire, Sumatra  Snowy River National Park, Australia  Bush fires on the Australian continent are yearly events that occur during the hot and dry austral summer season. While these fires cause loss of property and human lives, certain native flora in Australia have evolved to rely on bushfires as a means of reproduction and are an interwoven and essential part of the continent’s ecology. The yellowish smoke plume extending hundreds of kilometres from Victoria State towards the Tasman sea that shows up in the lower part of this image was caused by a large amount of fires that have been burning since the previous day.   Date: 10/02/2014   Resolution: 300m : fire, Australia 
Bushfires, South Australia  Due to extreme heat during late December 2014 and early January 2015, a series of bushfires occurred in Adelaide and its surroundings (Australia), becoming the region’s most severe fires since 1983. The fires lasted from 2 - 8 January 2015, incinerated more than 125 km 2  of land, and destroyed more than 30 houses in the Adelaide suburbs.  The image sequence presents, from left to right, the Adelaide region at 31 December 2014 , 2 January, and 4 January 2015. Extensive smoke plumes are well visible at 2 January, while the dark-green patch in the middle part of the 4 January image indicates the area that has been burned down by the fires.   Date: 04/01/2015   Resolution: 300m