Australia’s Bushfires Turn New Zealand’s Glaciers Pink


For weeks now, Australia has been dealing with severe bushfires.

They’ve engulfed Sydney in smoke, threatening air quality throughout New South Wales and destroying key koala habitat.

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Australia bushfires turn New Zealand glaciers pink. Pictures by Liz Carlson

In New South Wales alone, more than 100 bush and grassfires were burning as of Friday.

Nearly 4 million acres have burned across the country so far, unleashing massive plumes of smoke that have traveled across the ocean.

The smoke has been clearly visible from space, but it’s also left a mark on the ground, painting New Zealand glaciers a shade of dusty pink.

Yes, tiny particles of ash are turning the snow brownish-pink.

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The dust and ash from wildfires in Australia are turning glaciers red here in New Zealand ? . For the past few weeks the smoke and dust from the bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland, Australia have blown thousands of kilometers across the Tasman Sea, turning our normally clear skies hazy and our mountains red. . On a scenic helicopter flight with @wanakahelicopters around Mount Aspiring, you could see the glaciers covered in a layer of red dust, making them look dirty. It’s pretty remarkable to see the impact of the fires so far away. Our glaciers don’t need any more battles, and it puts the impact of climate change into even more stark reality we can’t ignore. . #wanaka #climatechange #newzealand #glacier #mtaspiring #australiafires #bushfire #nswfires

Une publication partagée par Liz Carlson☀️Young Adventuress (@youngadventuress) le

Fires in Australia Turn New Zealand’s Glaciers Pink

Travel blogger and photographer Liz Carlson captured the ominous sight during a helicopter ride in late November through Mount Aspiring National Park in New Zealand’s South Island, some more than 1,150 miles from where fires are burning.

As a frequent visitor to Mt. Aspiring, and flying as often as I can around these big mountains I call home, it was unusual and exciting to see something rare and different,Carlson wrote on her blog about the glaciers. “How crazy is it that we can see the impact of fires in Australia here in New Zealand?!

Watch more pictures clicking on the Facebook link below. Really impressive:

What’s The Impact Of Ash Falling On Glacier?

What’s not cool, however, is the potential impact of ash falling on glaciers.

Research shows that dust particles from Amazon forest fires falling on glaciers in the Andes may enhance glacier melting because darkened snow absorbs more sunlight.

And that’s another self-reinforcing feedback. The more wildfires that burn, the more ice that ends up being darkened, which affects the Earth’s albedo and makes the Earth absorb more heat, which causes more wildfires, and it goes on and on…

Meanwhile, wildfires continue to burn in Australia with a “mega fire” currently sweeping north of Sydney.

The country’s Bureau of Meteorology is forecasting a warmer, drier summer than usual and thus a possible increase of bushfires and heatwaves. [Youngadventuress]

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