Images of some of these climate events – both visually stunning and equally real – were captured by NASA’s fleet of Earth observation satellites and instruments on International Space Station.
On this day last year, NASA’s Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrophotometer captured images of dense tan smoke drifting across southeastern Australia, captured as the country ravaged one of the worst wildfire seasons on record.
The fire season in Australia is always dangerous – but conditions were unusually severe in 2020, fanning fires and making firefighting conditions extremely challenging.
Experts say climate change has exacerbated the scale and impact of natural disasters like fires and floods – weather conditions are getting harsher, and for years, fires started earlier in the season and spread more strongly.
In the image below, taken on September 9, a thick blanket of smoke can be seen along the West Coast.
“Climate and fire scientists have long predicted that fires in the western United States will increase in intensity, intensity and severity. But even the most experienced of them were at a loss in describing the scale and intensity of the fires raging in the West Coast states during September 2020.”
Many this year The fires were caused by lightning strikes, but extreme conditions including record temperatures, dry air, strong winds and droughts caused the fires to destroy neighboring forests and, ultimately, homes.
The VIIRS array, ozone mapping sensors, and array profiler (OMPS), on the NOAA-NASA Suomi NPP satellite, have collected daily images of dense plumes of aerosol particles blowing across the western United States, according to For NASA it was at a scale rarely seen by satellites and scientists.
Although this image appears to show a lush and green oasis, the NASA Landsat image actually reveals the dry river basin of the Argentine Parana River.
A prolonged period of unusually hot weather and drought in southern Brazil, Paraguay and northern Argentina caused the river to plummet to its lowest level in decades. The drought has not only contributed to an increase in fire activity in the delta and surrounding floodplains, but it has also affected local businesses and residents, with ship grounding and falling water levels costing millions of dollars to make the grain.
Hurricane Laura, one of the 10 most powerful hurricanes to make landfall in the United States, swept southwest of Louisiana in August, killing at least six people and leaving a wide path of devastation.
In the image above, captured by VIIRS on the NOAA-20 satellite, a storm looms off the US coast, highlighted by the darkness of the night, while infrared clouds are visible using brightness temperature data and superimposed on images showing city lights.