NASA released a series of incredible GIFs today showing how some of 2017’s natural disasters looked from space. In one of the images, smoke from this summer’s wildfires in California—some of which are still burning—can be seen drifting from the West Coast of North America over the entire continent, continuing across the Atlantic Ocean until it finally reaches Western Europe. It’s a stunning graphic that speaks to the devastation the fires are leaving behind.
Smoke, shown here in gray, can travel thousands of miles. Smoke from wildfires in the western U.S. looped all the way across the Atlantic Ocean to Europe. https://t.co/D1HDS5g5LI pic.twitter.com/xKSx2iNo7r
— NASA Earth (@NASAEarth) December 28, 2017
In early September, the National Interagency Fire Center said 80 large fires were burning in nine western U.S. states, and that people living in vast swaths of California, Oregon, Washington, Montana, and Idaho had been breathing air deemed hazardous by the U.S. government.