Dozens of fires were burning in southern China on 6 January 2008, when the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASAs Aqua satellite passed overhead and captured this image. Places where the sensor detected actively burning fires are marked with red dots. These fires are probably agricultural, not wildfires.
6 January 2008
The thick haze that mutes the rugged topography of the region is probably only partly caused by smoke from these fires. Industrial and urban pollution is a major health and environmental problem for eastern China, from southern cities such as Guangzhou to more northerly cities, such as Beijing.
Each of the cities labeled in the image has a population of more than 1 million residents; Guangzhou, the capital of Guangdong Province, has more than 4 million residents.
The large image provided above has a spatial resolution (level of detail) of 250 meters per pixel.