Forest fires are ravaging parts of Russia due to irresponsible handling of fires and grass being cut for agricultural purposes.
The St.Petersburg Times reports, authorities declared a state of emergency in seven federal subjects in Russia's eastern and far eastern territories as forest fires spread across the Country.
In Khanty-Mansiisk autonomous district and Tyva republic, as well as parts of the Sakha republic and the Kransoyarsk, Amur, Zabaikalsky and Sakhalin regions, restrictions are in place. The main reason why forest fires are breaking out in these regions is that grass is being burned for agricultural purposes. There have also been storms and citizens who have visited forests in these regions have not dealt with the situation appropriately. Citizens have been irresponsible in handling forest fires leading to more destruction. In a further 11 federal subjects, special fire prevention schemes have been carried out, prohibiting any visits to wooded areas. It is hoped that this will prevent fires from spreading and getting worse.
Since Monday morning, 198 forest fires have burned their way across Russia. Fortunately, the active fires are not threatening populated areas, or economically important projects, Interfax reported, citing forestry agency information.
The land that has been destroyed by fires, this year has been a lot more severe than in 2010, when drought in western Russia brought wildfires and choking smog to Moscow, Grigory Kuksin, head of Greenpeace Russia's wildfire program, said last week.
This year, Countries nearer to Europe have had a lot of rain, whilst Siberia has been dry due to anti-cyclone, Kuksin said.