Satellite image shows smoke from Bootleg wildfire in Oregon, US, July 18 | Photo: EFE / EPA / NASA / Gazeta do Povo
The largest of several active fires in the United States has reached such large dimensions that it is already generating its own climatic conditions, making the job of firefighters difficult, local authorities informed on Tuesday (20).
The Bootleg Fire in southeastern Oregon near the California border burned more than 157,000 hectares (an area larger than the city of Los Angeles), destroyed at least 117 human buildings, killed people breeding animals, devastated pastures and destroyed plantations since it was declared in early July. The flames are fought by more than two thousand firefighters.
“The fire is so big and generates so much energy and extreme heat that it changes the weather conditions. Usually the weather situation indicates what the fire will do. In this case, the fire says what will happen to the climate,” did he declare. Oregon Department of Forestry spokesperson Marcus Kauffman.
Only large fires like this are likely to affect the climate, which further complicates extinguishing tasks, as it is not possible to know how the flames will develop in the short term.
Satellite image shows smoke from a wildfire in Bootleg, Oregon, United States, July 18 Aerial view of a pyrocumulus or “cloud of fire” above the fire in Bootleg, Oregon, July 14 Firefighter fights Bootleg, Oregon, USA, July 15 fire flames DC-10 Tanker throws flame retardant over Bootleg, Oregon, USA fire July 15 Firefighters fight the flames of a fire in Bootleg, Oregon, United States, July 17
Satellite images recorded on Tuesday show a huge column of smoke moving north from southeastern Oregon to the Canadian border, about a thousand kilometers away.
The blaze is affecting a mountainous and vegetative area of the Fremont-Winema National Forest and firefighters believe they will not be able to fully extinguish the flames until early October.
Authorities say the blaze has already affected a huge swath of Oregon, which is larger than Britain, but the impacts on people have not been as great as the predominantly rural state is sparsely populated. . If a fire of this proportion affected the most densely populated areas of California, for example, thousands of homes would have already been destroyed, experts told local media.
Despite this, at least 2,000 homes have been evacuated and 5,000 more are in danger. At least 70 homes were consumed by the flames, according to the Associated Press.
The effects of the blaze can be seen in New York City, on the other side of the country, where residents could see smoke blanketing the city sky and giving a reddish tint to the sun on Tuesday.
In addition to the Oregon blaze, 80 other major fires are occurring in various parts of the western United States, including several in California, where extreme drought after a nearly rainless winter and with high temperatures these last few weeks anticipated the fire season by several months.