I mentioned the Malaga fire a couple of days ago HERE and today it is still blazing ferociously. Regional authority fire chief Juan Sánchez said, indeed, that they were facing the most complex fire known to the forestry fire services in recent times. “We have been talking a long time”, he said, “about the consequences of environmental neglect or climate change. Today we are living them.” The fire has now been in overdrive for more than 100 hours and further parts of Andalusia continue to be evacuated, with the fire regaining strength even where efforts had seemed to have had some effect as in the forested areas north of Estepona. As Juan Sánchez says, we are living the consequences of climate change and our failure to confront the issue. Right now, however, bomberos are fighting those consequences face to face.
Meteorologists have explained that some of the voracious fires they are seeing now have become capable of creating their own weather systems. This is happening in the Malaga fire where flames are reaching a height of 30m, so humans cannot fight them and water planes have to be called in … but the water evaporates before reaching the flames, and so the fire becomes, in the words of those at the sharp end, tremendous, virulent, violent … but no words can do justice, they say, to their enormity and ferocity. They call them sixth-generation fires, and they are tied to climate change say all experts involved directly. And they are here now. We’ve seen them, they say, in Portugal, then In Greece, in California, and Australia. And now they are here with us, in Spain.
This explanatory graphic sourced by meteorologists, photo by press agency EFE, shows how these huge unmanageable and unfightable fires create their own local climates, and there is a National Geographic explanation of these sixth-generation mega-fires HERE.