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Extensive Fires in the Western U.S.

Extensive Fires in the Western U.S.

The summer of 2000 is shaping up to be the worst U.S. fire season in four years. On July 27, 2000, fires were burning in Mesa Verde National Park (Colorado), Montana, Idaho, Utah, Washington, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, and California. The Mesa Verde fire has threatened some prehistoric archeological sites. Ironically, other sites have been unearthed as vegetation was burned away by the fire and as firefighters dug trenches to serve as firebreaks. In a bizarre coincidence, one of the fires came close to the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory, the third nuclear site affected by fire this year.

This image from GOES 11, the newest NOAA Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES), shows smoke plumes and heat signatures (red) from many of fires in the western United States on the evening of July 27.

For current GOES images and more information, visit the GOES Project Science page.

Marit Jentoft-Nilsen and Robert Simmon, NASA GSFC, based on data provided by NOAA