As six of the largest 20 fires in California history poured smoke into the atmosphere in recent weeks, and new fires were sparked in Oregon and Washington, the skies over the Bay Area and beyond were blanketed in smoke and at times turned unnerving shades of orange. Reports of ash falling flooded social media as entire towns were evacuated due to the fires.
On August 16, 2020, more than 10,000 lightning strikes pummeled the Bay Area, sparking wildfires across the region. Twelve days later, two of the three largest fires ever recorded in California history are still burning. Aclima scientists analyzed both regulatory and Aclima data to identify patterns in the impacts of these lightning complex fires on air quality.