Russian forest fires are worse than last year

June 15, 2011 MOSCOW
— YTD fires destroyed almost three times more forest and crop than last year, when the country experienced a severe drought in half a century, the government said. The fires have destroyed almost 635.568 hectares (1.57 million acres) of land with January. 1, compared with about 216.374 hectares in the same period last year, the Emergency Ministry said on its Web site today. About JSC hectares mostly forest area, including three fires in protected areas, is still burning, the minister said. Fires, many caused by smoldering peat fields, scorched area three times the size of Luxembourg, has killed more than 50 people and burned hundreds of private homes in the past year. —BloombergSource:

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