Historic Wildfires Continue Raging in Turkey

When we look back at 2020, we’ll think about the start of the coronavirus pandemic. In 2021, we may remember it for all the wildfires that occurred.

Forest fires raged throughout the Mediterranean during the summer, burning fiercely enough in some areas where entire areas were lost. Numerous firefighters gave their lives to prevent its further spread, and thousands have lost homes. 

Scientists have even found that breathing in the smoke from wildfires adds susceptibility to Covid infections.

Over 200 Wildfires Started in Turkey

The 2021 Turkey wildfires saw a series of over 200 events that would eventually burn more than 1,700 square kilometers of forested land. It would be the worst season in the country’s history, with the first fires beginning in Manavgat on July 28.

Since the 1940s, the number of reported fires in the Mediterranean has increased from about 1,000 per year to over 3,500 annually. With warmer and drier conditions becoming frequent, Turkey expects to see more droughts and longer fire seasons.

The season has been made more difficult because of how fast the fires move. In the first week alone, over 160,000 acres fell victim to these events.

Although rare summer rains in Antalya helped calm some of the problems, firefighters were active throughout August to prevent more structures from burning. 

If there is any good news from the historic wildfires in Turkey, almost all the burnt forests are Turkish pine. It typically regrows naturally, which means these areas can eventually return to their former glory. Numerous news sites are tracking developments.