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Wildfires raging in Russia.

Image Credit: Pierre Markuse Twitter.

Russia’s Chelyabinsk region near Kazakhstan and north-eastern Siberia has been hit by a huge forest fires after the region experienced abnormally high temperatures similiar to what is happening in Spain and Western United States.

Authorities deployed Ilyushin Il-76 and Beriev Be-200 aircraft, Mi Mi-8 helicopters and around 630 personnel to fight the forest fires in Chelyabinsk. People had to be evacuated from two large villages due to the fires. The fires engulfed Dzhabyk and Zapasnoye villages, destroying 71 buildings. The coldest region in Russia, Yakutia is also experiencing abnormally huge forest fires for the third year in a row.

Image Credit: Screenshot from a video uploaded by Pierre Markuse Twitter account.

According to Russian Emergency Ministry Spokesman, the wildfires in Chelyabinsk engulfed 14,000 hectares in three districts. In Yakutia, around 160 forest fires were reported covering an area of 4,400 square kilometres. Due to the isolation of the vast region of Yakutia, there are no threats to economic facilities and settlements according to the forestry service. An Antonov An-26 aircraft attempted to stimulate artificial rain in the region by releasing sodium iodide into the clouds, but to no avail.

The Russian Minister of Natural Resources said last May that the unusual huge forest fires in the country is due to the global warming, which is causing the permaforst in the northern part of the country to slowly disappear. He said that in a couple of decades it might be possibe to farm the land in the northern part of Russia.

More details to follow.

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