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Forest Fire Emissions From Indonesia Worse Than Amazon, EU Says

  • Indonesia released 709 million tons of CO2: EU’s CAMS says
  • Land clearance for plantations during drought blamed for fires
Peatland and forest fires in Central Kalimantan on Sept. 14.
Peatland and forest fires in Central Kalimantan on Sept. 14.

Photographer: Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images 

From

Fires that destroyed Indonesian rainforests pumped out more carbon dioxide than the blazes in the Amazon this year, according to the European Union’s atmosphere observation program.

The fires, which covered parts of Southeast Asia with thick clouds of ash and smoke, may have released the equivalent of 709 million tons of carbon dioxide through Nov. 15, or about the same as the annual emissions of Canada. That’s 22% more than the estimated 579 megatons ejected from burning Amazon forest, according to the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service, a program run on behalf of the European Commission.