Fires continue to burn throughout southeast Asia. The Measurements Of Pollution In The Troposphere (MOPITT) instrument aboard NASA’s Terra satellite has been monitoring the impact of these intense local pollution sources on regional air quality through measurements of carbon monoxide in the lower atmosphere. Carbon monoxide is a good tracer of pollution since it is produced as a by-product of the combustion associated with the wildfires and agricultural fires that are widespread throughout the region at this time of year. This false-color image shows carbon monoxide plumes at an altitude of roughly 3 km (700 millibars) in the atmosphere over southeast Asia. This image represents a composite of data collected from February 27-March 4, 2003. The gray areas show where no data were collected, either due to persistent cloud cover or gaps between viewing swaths.
Image courtesy the NCAR and University of Toronto MOPITT Teams