Several fires dot this image of India acquired on February 6, 2006. Haze is a persistent feature in the Northern area of the country; it obscures the upper portion of the image, which reaches to the base of the Himalayas. Across the country, numerous fires are burning and have been marked as red dots in the image. Blue-gray smoke floats around the fires, particularly along both coastlines. In the bottom part of the scene, fires line the foothills of the Western (left) and Eastern (right) Ghats Mountains, which bracket the broad expense of the Deccan plateau. In the top of the scene, the fires are predominantly located near rivers. The geographic pattern of the fires and the time of year suggest that these fires are possibly being set intentionally for agricultural purposes. Though these fires do not necessarily create an immediate hazard, such broad-scale burning can have a strong impact on weather, climate, human health, and natural resources. Also visible in the image is the Thar desert in the upper left corner of the image and the upper portion of Sri Lanka at the bottom center.
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