Smoke and flame continue to color the skies over large portions of the
western United States. Limited rainfall and scorching temperatures have
created ideal conditions for fires, and weary firefighters are struggling to
combat the blazes.
This image shows fire danger around the United States, based on data collected
between July 20th and 27th, 2000. (The animation shows a sequence of eight-day
measurements, running from April 28th to July 27th, 2000.) Red areas
indicate where fire potential is greater and green areas show places where
the threat is lower. This fire potential map is based on the Soil Moisture Index (SMI).
SMI is derived from temperature and vegetation
measurements taken by NOAA's satellite-based Advanced Very High Resolution
Radiometer (AVHRR). SMI data is regularly posted at: http://www.forestry.umt.edu/rsl/smi/smidata.htm