Weather News

Australian smoke travelling across Pacific Ocean

Ben Domensino, Thursday January 2, 2020 - 21:21 EDT

Satellite images show smoke from Australia's bushfires travelling past New Zealand and across the South Pacific Ocean.

A burst of hot and windy weather caused a number of fires to erupt over southeastern Australia on New Year's Eve. Since then, smoke has been billowing across the Pacific Ocean as flames continue to scorch parched bushland in NSW and Victoria.

Image: Smoke passing over the Tasman Sea on December 31st, 2019.

Japan's Himawari-8 satellite has been capturing images of the smoke as it slowly travels from west to east over the Tasman Sea and across the Pacific. At times the thick smoke has shrouded parts of New Zealand, turning the skies across the country brown.

As the sun was setting on Thursday evening, Australia's bushfire smoke had travelled close to 5,000km away from the nation's southeast coast.

Image: Bushfire smoke stretching close to 5,000km off Australia's east coast on January 2nd, 2020.

This westerly journey is likely to continue in the coming days. Earlier this season, smoke from bushfires in eastern Australia crossed the South Pacific Ocean and reached as far as South America.

Unfortunately, another bout of hot and windy weather will elevate fire danger ratings in southeastern Australia during the next two days, which will likely see fires flaring up once again.

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