Forest fires have enveloped entire cities in Siberia in smoke and those who worry about the Environment have cautioned that the nature of the fire is a matter of concern. Unless checked, it could accelerate global warming and have adverse effects on the health of the people who live in the region. Therefore, Russian president Vladimir Putin has involved the army. They have to control the forest fires that have devastated nearly 7.4m acres of land in different parts of the country. The smoke has affected not only small settlements but also cities and disrupted air travel.

The Guardian reports dry thunderstorms in Siberia triggered the fires. The surrounding temperatures exceeded 86F and the strong winds helped the fires to spread. This is as per information provided by the federal forestry agency of Russia. Teams of firefighters were attending to the fires. The defense ministry has revealed to the media that an aerial exercise is also on by deploying aircraft and helicopters to the Krasnoyarsk region. This is one of the worst affected.

Summer fires are common in Russia

The authorities have declared a state of emergency in five regions of Siberia.

Images in social media show smoke all over the place with poor visibility. The majority of the fires are in remote or inaccessible areas and the decision is to extinguish them on a selective basis. A petition launched a week ago called upon the authorities to focus more on fighting the fires. It has gathered considerable attention and hundreds and thousands of signatures.

It is important to know that forest fires can play havoc with the environment.

The Guardian elaborates that fires in summer are not new to Russia. However, this year they are more severe.

Greenpeace says the fires have destroyed almost 12m hectares of forest. The result is significant CO2 emissions. This, in turn, reduces the ability of the forest to absorb carbon dioxide. Greenpeace has criticized the authorities for “a delayed response to the crisis.”

President Trump spoke with president Putin

According to ABC News, the Russian military is trying to fight forest fires in Siberia. These have engulfed nearly 11,580 sq.miles of territory in Siberia and the Russian Far East. The area is approximately the size of Belgium. President Donald Trump has spoken with Russian president Vladimir Putin on the subject and "expressed concern over the vast wildfires afflicting Siberia."

Russia has sent military transport planes and helicopters to drop water on the fires.

Life stands disrupted and satellite photos reveal the extent of the smoke pollution. The fire started from lightning strikes in "dry thunderstorms." This is a situation where the precipitation disperses before it reaches the ground. Strong winds fanned the flames and led to the spread of the fire. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev visited the city of Krasnoyarsk and said: "The situation is difficult. Many forests are burning, smog and smoke are observed over many populated areas.”