On August 23, NASA published a terrible satellite image showing numerous fires worldwide. Although Africa seems to be the most impacted area, it is probably due to agricultural fires that aim to return nutrients to the soil. Elsewhere, they are much more alarming because they are the result of an already deteriorated climate situation. For example, the United States and South America are especially vulnerable to wildfires triggered by a domino effect of dry air, high wind and drought brought on by low precipitation in previous years. In Europe, Sweden faced unusual wildfires due to an extreme heatwave and Greece deplored the deaths of 49 people due to fires close to Athens. In France, this summer is the second hottest ever, 2°C above “normal” temperatures.
Burning fires around the world (updated August 23, 2018)
In Asia, an extraordinary monsoon killed 750 people in India, Nepal, and Bangladesh due to floods and, according to the Red Cross, 24 million people have been affected by floods in this area. In Nepal, the scarcity of drinkable water and food could lead to a humanitarian disaster.
Nicolas Hulot, the recently resigned French Minister for Ecology, warned that we just have 10 years to limit climate change before it is out of human hands…Let’s hope his call will be heard before we “take a season ticket for a one-way ride”, to quote AC/DC.
Emeric Nicolas, Head of Data Science Dpt. – Sources: Beyond Ratings, NASA