We’re only too familiar with Washington State smoke and fires but, sadly, fires are a now global problem as seen in this NASA image of the world.

The fires have various causes. Much of the burning in sub-Saharan Africa comes from agricultural fires deliberately set which can easily get out of control given the hot dry conditions which are influencing our seasons all over the world. In North and South American the fires are mostly wildfires. In Chile, for example, even though it’s winter, the NASA image shows an unusual number of wildfires because of a mega draught. In Brazil some fires are deliberately set to clear land for cattle raising. All over the world these fires, no matter how they’ve started, add greatly to pollution, putting more carbon in the atmosphere and contaminating the air we all breathe.

-Susan and Merv Montacute