Quick update about Siberian wildfires. Ust-Ilimsk town is surrounded by fire hotspots.


Another aspect of the media coverage of Siberian wildfires came under our notice. For too long period, these massive wildfires were considered to be very remote from any large populated place. This premise is frequently accepted as a priori truth despite the fact that quantitative information tells dramatically different story. There are many populated places under pre-hazardous conditions due to crawling forest fires right now. Most Russian cities nowadays are in the close vicinity to a hotspot of forest fire that can range from small to very large size. Among the large populated places (> 100 000 population) average distance to the closest fire hotspot equals to 48 km (in the last 48 hours) according to FIRMS VIIRS 375 m product. One may argue that most of these hotspots are small and insignificant. Unfortunately, it is not the case as well. State of emergency was called in the Siberian town of Ust-Ilimsk (Irkutsk Region) which is home for 82 000 people. The distance between the town center and the closest fire hotspot is ~9 km and most importantly, the town is surrounded by massive wildfires in the region. We are closely monitoring the wildfire dynamics in Siberia and will be posting updates about the situation. BT - Brightness Temperature Data source: FIRMS product (VIIRS)

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