August 17, 2021

Wild Weather and Wildfires


Wild Weather and Wildfires
Snow in Magadan. This picture is from January, not this summer, but still... Wikimedia Commons user Yevgeny Serov

Like the rest of the world, Russia has been experiencing some odd weather this summer.

Despite foreign stereotypes, Russia does have summer weather . . . usually. Even Siberia. But in the Siberian port city of Magadan, it has snowed three times this summer.

Up on the Kolyma Gulf on the Arctic, building summer snowpeople is not unusual. But in Magadan, at the southern end of the Kolyma Region, it is an unexpected way to spend a summer afternoon.

The snow has fallen in Magadan amid unusually hot weather in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and elsewhere in Russia. Wildfires in Siberia have become the world's worst at the moment. Yakutia, one of the world's coldest inhabited spots in the winter, is unseasonably hot and the hardest hit. The smoke has drifted to Alaska and the North Pole. The Yakutia fire could turn into the biggest fire in world history. With Russia the biggest country in the world by a large margin, this is not so surprising.

Greenpeace estimates that 62,000 square miles of Russia have burned in 2021. President Putin is alarmed. Wildfires accelerate carbon dioxide emissions in a nasty, nightmarish climate change loop: the Siberian fires have released more carbon dioxide than Britain's emissions for the entire year of 2019.

You Might Also Like

Magadan
  • July 01, 2019

Magadan

On July 14, 2019, Magadan will celebrate the 80th anniversary of its founding. Alas, this date, like so much else in the city’s history, is a lie.
Not a Snowball's Chance
  • February 05, 2021

Not a Snowball's Chance

One wouldn’t expect it to be an issue for a snowman to be left out in the cold, but in the village of Zachachye in Arkhangelsk Oblast, four such fellows were found wanting for warmth.
Death of a Snowman
  • January 08, 2021

Death of a Snowman

Hooligans struck a collection of over 200 snowmen in the town of Kaluga, an act of gruesome vandalism.
Mayorless Magadan
  • November 17, 2020

Mayorless Magadan

The position of mayor in the Far East town of Magadan is apparently so undesirable that no one wants the job.
Like this post? Get a weekly email digest + member-only deals

Some of Our Books

The Little Humpbacked Horse

The Little Humpbacked Horse

A beloved Russian classic about a resourceful Russian peasant, Vanya, and his miracle-working horse, who together undergo various trials, exploits and adventures at the whim of a laughable tsar, told in rich, narrative poetry.
Life Stories: Original Fiction By Russian Authors

Life Stories: Original Fiction By Russian Authors

The Life Stories collection is a nice introduction to contemporary Russian fiction: many of the 19 authors featured here have won major Russian literary prizes and/or become bestsellers. These are life-affirming stories of love, family, hope, rebirth, mystery and imagination, masterfully translated by some of the best Russian-English translators working today. The selections reassert the power of Russian literature to affect readers of all cultures in profound and lasting ways. Best of all, 100% of the profits from the sale of this book are going to benefit Russian hospice—not-for-profit care for fellow human beings who are nearing the end of their own life stories.
Faith & Humor: Notes from Muscovy

Faith & Humor: Notes from Muscovy

A book that dares to explore the humanity of priests and pilgrims, saints and sinners, Faith & Humor has been both a runaway bestseller in Russia and the focus of heated controversy – as often happens when a thoughtful writer takes on sacred cows. The stories, aphorisms, anecdotes, dialogues and adventures in this volume comprise an encyclopedia of modern Russian Orthodoxy, and thereby of Russian life.
Russia Rules

Russia Rules

From the shores of the White Sea to Moscow and the Northern Caucasus, Russian Rules is a high-speed thriller based on actual events, terrifying possibilities, and some really stupid decisions.
Woe From Wit (bilingual)

Woe From Wit (bilingual)

One of the most famous works of Russian literature, the four-act comedy in verse Woe from Wit skewers staid, nineteenth century Russian society, and it positively teems with “winged phrases” that are essential colloquialisms for students of Russian and Russian culture.
Jews in Service to the Tsar

Jews in Service to the Tsar

Benjamin Disraeli advised, “Read no history: nothing but biography, for that is life without theory.” With Jews in Service to the Tsar, Lev Berdnikov offers us 28 biographies spanning five centuries of Russian Jewish history, and each portrait opens a new window onto the history of Eastern Europe’s Jews, illuminating dark corners and challenging widely-held conceptions about the role of Jews in Russian history.
Driving Down Russia's Spine

Driving Down Russia's Spine

The story of the epic Spine of Russia trip, intertwining fascinating subject profiles with digressions into historical and cultural themes relevant to understanding modern Russia. 
22 Russian Crosswords

22 Russian Crosswords

Test your knowledge of the Russian language, Russian history and society with these 22 challenging puzzles taken from the pages of Russian Life magazine. Most all the clues are in English, but you must fill in the answers in Russian. If you get stumped, of course all the puzzles have answers printed at the back of the book.
The Best of Russian Life

The Best of Russian Life

We culled through 15 years of Russian Life to select readers’ and editors’ favorite stories and biographies for inclusion in a special two-volume collection. Totalling over 1100 pages, these two volumes encompass some of the best writing we have published over the last two decades, and include the most timeless stories and biographies – those that can be read again and again.
Murder and the Muse

Murder and the Muse

KGB Chief Andropov has tapped Matyushkin to solve a brazen jewel heist from Picasso’s wife at the posh Metropole Hotel. But when the case bleeds over into murder, machinations, and international intrigue, not everyone is eager to see where the clues might lead.
Moscow and Muscovites

Moscow and Muscovites

Vladimir Gilyarovsky's classic portrait of the Russian capital is one of Russians’ most beloved books. Yet it has never before been translated into English. Until now! It is a spectactular verbal pastiche: conversation, from gutter gibberish to the drawing room; oratory, from illiterates to aristocrats; prose, from boilerplate to Tolstoy; poetry, from earthy humor to Pushkin. 

About Us

Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.

Our Contacts

Russian Life
PO Box 567
Montpelier VT 05601-0567

800-639-4301
802-223-4955