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Devastating Wildfires Led to Record-High Emissions This Summer

Carbon emissions from blazes in the Northern Hemisphere rose to the highest ever in July and August, Copernicus says

Trees burn during the Caldor Fire in Kirkwood, California.

Trees burn during the Caldor Fire in Kirkwood, California.

Photographer: Eric Thayer/Bloomberg

Blazes in the Mediterranean basin, North America and Siberia resulted in the highest level of carbon emissions from wildfires ever recorded during summer in the Northern Hemisphere.

The fires released a record 1.3 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in July and 1.4 billion tons in August, according to a report by Europe’s Earth observation agency Copernicus. Just under a third of the emissions came from blazes in Russia.