- Tram Ho
Extreme heat in the Siberian region of Russia is sending a warning signal about what might be waiting for the world in the future. For the first time in history, the temperature measured in the Siberian town of Verkhoyansk was over 38 degrees Celsius on June 20. This figure is still being verified by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
But even without confirmation, experts at WMO could not help but watch as much of Russia’s Arctic territory was engulfed in red in the newly captured satellite images. According to Reuters, extreme heat is increasing the scale of wildfires in this remote area. The fire then spread to peatlands that were flooded under normal conditions.
Scientists fear these fires are an early sign of drier conditions in the near future. Frequent fires will “release” carbon from peat land and forests, thereby increasing the greenhouse gas emissions in the air. “This is what this heatwave is doing. It’s not only turning plants but the land into fuel for fires. This is one of the vicious cycles going on in the Arctic that is driving climate change.” “- Thomas Smith of London School of Economics (UK), told Reuters.
A satellite image of Maxar Technologies (USA) shows smoke rising from forest fires near the Berezovka river in Russia on June 23 Photo: MAXAR TECHNOLOGIES
According to Smith, satellite data for the area collected since 2003 shows a sharp increase in greenhouse gas emissions due to Arctic fires over the past two summers. Specifically, the total emissions of June 2019 and June 2020 exceeded the total emissions recorded in June of the period 2003-2018. At the same time, atmospheric data collected more than 100 years ago also show that the Arctic air temperature has been constantly breaking records in recent years.
Scientists have long known that climate change is making the Arctic warm twice as fast as the rest of the world. The heat wave in May in Siberia is typical of that trend. Expert Walt Meier of the University of Colorado (USA), said that extreme heat is gradually becoming a common phenomenon.
As temperatures rise, the melting ice in the Arctic, many regions will become darker and absorb heat faster, contributing to hotter climates. Not stopping there, the phenomenon of warming is thought to make the Arctic forest fire season last longer. This forest fire season usually takes place in July and August of previous years but this year the fire has occurred since May.
The fires in Siberia underscored the need to cut emissions caused by human activity. Scientists warn that wider changes in the Arctic could have a more serious impact on the global climate system.
In Europe, extreme heat has caused headaches in many places in the context of the outbreak of Covid-19. Many areas in Spain recorded temperatures fluctuating at 40 degrees C this week. And Britain has just experienced the hottest day since the beginning of the year with the temperature reaching 33 degrees Celsius at Heathrow Airport in London on June 25. On the same day, the Bournemouth authorities, a coastal town in southern England, had to declare a serious incident when many people flocked to local beaches ignoring public health guidance on the Covid epidemic. -19.
Source : Genk