Large areas of Siberia are on fire, sparking concerns that the blaze could soon morph into the next Australian bushfire crisis. The timing is particularly dangerous as officials in Russia are currently focused on handling the coronavirus pandemic, which has currently infected around 200,000 people and claimed the lives of close to 2,000 throughout the country.
Though Siberia tends to suffer from fires annually, experts are warning that warmer spring temperatures have made the blazes much worse this year. For example, ZME Science reported that one specific region of Siberia, known as Krasnoyarsk, has seen the fires reach 10 times more than the area of last year's fires.
In addition, the fires in the Amur region have engulfed one and a half times the area as last year, while the burned territory in Transbaikal is three times larger. Overall, nine areas in Siberia have been affected by the wildfires, causing smoke and pollution to mar the landscape.