The West Coast of America has been attacked by a highly destructive fire, and it is currently raging throughout the US West, creating an alarming amount of smoke that can be witnessed in most of the states across the country.
Weather channels have reported carrying conditions and thick concentrations of smoke across the West, and this smoke can be observed in far off eastern states, for instance the Hudson Bay and Lake Superior. Even certain areas far off in the south, such as Baja, California, can also observe the concentration of the smoke.
Reports reveal that the aerosol index simulations emitted from the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center last Friday until Monday even revealed thick smoke particles in the South-eastern coast of America, including certain areas of upstate New York and northern New England. The thickest concentration of this smoke can be witnessed across majority of the states across America, including California, northern Nevada, Oregon, southern Wyoming, eastern Washington, south-western Nebraska, northern Utah and northern Colorado.
In California alone, there are 18 active fire, which includes the Mendocino Complex Fire, which has been declared as the largest fire in the history of the state. This massive fire has even overshadowed the Thomas Fire that occurred last year and ended up burning over 284,800 acres of land in Santa Barbara and Ventura.
Alexander Gerst, an astronaut of the European Space Agency, captured several pictures of the thickly concentration plumes of smoke and fire emerging from the International Space Station in California. Gerst tweeted this picture on 3rd August with a caption that said,
California burning. These fires are frightening to watch, even from space. Here’s a shout-out from space to all firefighters on this planet, my former colleagues. Stay safe my friends!
California burning. These fires are frightening to watch, even from space. Here's a shout-out from space to all firefighters on this planet, my former colleagues. Stay safe my friends! pic.twitter.com/y7PNmR006b
— Alexander Gerst (@Astro_Alex) August 3, 2018
Various communities have been afflicted in the areas surrounding the wildfires, and officials have provide air quality advisories throughout various communities. According to the National Weather Service, warnings have emerged that being exposed to particle pollution can lead to the development of certain gravely severe health ailments, for instance, it can trigger asthma attacks, aggravate an existing lung ailment, trigger acute bronchitis, or even raise the risk factors of developing certain respiratory infections.
Experts believe that these destructive plumes of wildfire that have occurred in the west mainly occurred due to climate change, because when drought and heat waves combine with one another, they increase the risk of igniting dry vegetation and creating a roaring wildfire.
Scott Mclean, the deputy chief at the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, shared his opinion on the matter in a recent interview,
It is our changing climate that is leading to more severe and destructive fires.
— NWS Boise (@NWSBoise) August 7, 2018