Fires in Mexico

Fires in Mexico and Central America

20 April 2007

During the dry season in Central America and southern Mexico (roughlybetween December and May), fires are common. This image of the area was capturedby the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite on 18 April 2007.Places where MODIS detected actively burning fires are marked in red.

18 April 2007

Fires are concentrated in agricultural areas of northwestern Guatemala.Although agricultural fires are not necessarily immediately hazardous, they canhave a strong influence on weather, climate, human health, and adjacent naturalresources. Each fire season scientists in the tropical forests of northernGuatemala must keep a close eye on agricultural fires to make sure they do notaccidentally invade natural areas and preserves that protect archaeologicalruins from the Maya civilization. Read about the role of MODIS fire detectionsin protecting Maya ruins in the sidebar “FireAlerts Go Global,” part of the Earth Observatory feature article FireAlarms from Orbit.

The large image provided above has a spatial resolution (level of detail) of250 meters per pixel.

(source: EarthObservatory)

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