Scientists still have much to learn about Covid-19, but, says Jessica McCarty, a geographer and fire scientist at Miami University, “We know that there's linkages between people who live in highly-polluted areas and their likelihood of getting any type of respiratory illness, as well as viral infections.” Smog from cars, for instance, remains a major threat to human health.
After almost six weeks of monitoring air quality during Level 3 and 4 lockdown restrictions, scientist Dr Ian Longley is now asking people to record where and when woodsmoke is affecting their health and lives.
Louie learned from his guide that workers spend 12-hour shifts dodging plumes of poisonous smoke (with many protected only by rags tied around their mouths) while carrying up to 180 pounds of sulfur on their backs.
The site, which opened in November after three years of construction, is meant to adapt to emerging security threats, and imparts the lessons of recent traumas like the attack on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya.
"I think every person ended up licking the glass or just smearing their entire face against it to get really interesting color fields with the makeup and sweat mixing," Whitmore says.
"I took a lot of the photographs from my driveway, essentially." The hard work of local firefighters saved the house, and Cooley continued photographing the aftermath of the fire, which eventually consumed over 7,000 acres, becoming one of the largest in Los Angeles history.
Smoke from home fires in winter can be smelt across our towns, causing irritation and annoyance to some, reducing visibility, and frequently causing air quality to exceed the National Environmental Standard. Although we don’t monitor smog directly, the levels of smoke are indicated by networks of air quality monitors operated by regional councils.
The Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) instrument on NASA's Terra satellite passed over California on July 27 and July 29, observing the Carr Fire on July 27 and the Ferguson Fire on July 29.
On that day, huge plumes of smoke drifted over North America and Africa, three different tropical cyclones churned in the Pacific Ocean, and large clouds of dust blew over deserts in Africa and Asia.
By 2050, an estimated 83.7 million people over the age of 65 will call the US home, nearly doubling the current population—and a paper published in April found that bad smoke days during California’s 2015 wildfire season caused spikes in emergency room visits, with the most pronounced impact on patients over 65.
In a recently published study, US Forest Service researchers Sonya Sachdeva and Sarah McCaffrey found that, when analyzed in large numbers, tweets about wildfires can accurately model the way smoke moves.In their study, published by the International Conference on Social Media & Society, Sachdeva and McCaffrey analyzed close to 39,000 tweets posted between May and September 2015 in California.