Forests burning at alarming rates in Canada, Russia

2 April 2015

Fires are ravaging the forests of Russia and Canada, burning at a higher rate in some cases than at any time in the past 10,000 years.

High-resolution satellite maps from Global Forest Watch showed the two nations lost a combined average of nearly 6.8 million hectares (26,000 square miles) per year between 2011 and 2013. That equates to an area equivalent to the size of Ireland.

"This new data shows in detail how Russia and Canada have faced a massive spike in tree cover loss," said Nigel Sizer, the global director of forest programs for the World Resources Institute, which is the lead organization in Global Forest Watch.

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