2015: Forest fires in Indonesia: El Niño phenomenon or man-made?
Devastating bushfires in Indonesia: in 2015, the weather in large parts of the world was determined by the El Niño climate phenomenon. Especially in the western Pacific region, it was extremely dry. In Indonesia, tens thousands of square kilometres of forest and bush land burned, leaving for months a thick veil of smoke over large parts of Southeast Asia. The consequences were serious: people suffered health damage, airports and schools were closed and public life was generally impaired. The economic damage is running into billions, with property damage likely to exceed one billion US dollars.
Blaming the fires solely on the El Niño phenomenon would be too easy. The fires were deliberately laid – for cleared woodland. However, due to the extreme drought, the burnt area was in the end many times greater than originally planned.
According to a new study, the fires cost the lives of more than 100,000 people - the vast majority of them in Indonesia.
Despite the fact that stricter regulations are now in place for palm oil production and its link to deforestation in Southeast Asia, the region's forests continue to burn. Months of fires rage annually in Indonesia; smoke and smog affect the climate not only in Indonesia, but also in Singapore, Malaysia and other parts of Southeast Asia. Up to 30 million people have been affected in the region. According to the Indonesian Disaster Management Agency (BNPB), 99% of the fires were deliberately set by palm oil plantation farmers to meet the ongoing global demand for palm oil and other over-consumed commodities.
Australian Bush Fire 2019 / 2020
Every year again: However, the duration of the bush fires this time exceeds that of previous years. Furthermore, according to the media information available to us, states were affected which have been spared so far.
Our personal sympathy goes out to the people who lost family and friends in the fight against the flames and to the millions of animals who died in the fire or are on the run, fighting for their lives.
Even the Australian Rainforest was threatened by the flames; images of the burning forests have shocked us deeply.
The recent bushfires and their impact on our environment, especially air pollution, were unprecedented in Australia's history. In total, the fire extended over an area of more than 100,000 km². It was observed that the dust particles from the ash circled the earth several times.
These dusts, among many other dust particles, blacken glaciers. These impurities are clearly visible on tidewater glaciers.