Giant blaze in Australia blankets Sydney in hazardous smoke

NSW Rural Fire Service crews fight a fire as it burns close to property on Wheelbarrow Ridge Road at Colo Heights

New South Wales and Queensland are worst affected, with at least 140 bushfires threatening lives and homes.

Since October, bushfires have killed six people and destroyed more than 700 homes throughout Australia.

About 1000 homes have been either damaged or destroyed this bushfire season, while nearly 5000 homes have been saved, according to figures released by the RFS on Friday evening.

Almost ten thousand miles away at the United Nations Climate Conference in Madrid campaigners have raised concerns that globally oil and gas companies are expanding operations instead of scaling back to help lower emissions and fight climate change.

Microsoft News US is supporting Microsoft News Australia in its campaign to help respond to the devastating bushfires that are ravaging the country.

Aerial footage captured a "firenado" that formed on Saturday in the Bundamba suburb of Ipswich, Queensland, shows what is one of the more than 100 fires now raging across eastern Australia.

Video footage from the Orangeville space confirmed firefighters operating from a wall of fireplace and the Walkabout Wildlife Park has evacuated a whole lot of animals.

"The total area burnt by these fires is around 335,000 hectares", the RFS said in a statement on Friday evening.

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Firefighters from Canada were briefed in Sydney on Friday and will be deployed across New South Wales over the weekend, to be joined by teams from the US.

"The massive fires of #NSW are in some cases simply too important to extinguish for the moment", wrote the Australian Bureau of Meteorology in a message on its official Twitter account.

December 10 is the next big concern, with temperatures inland of Sydney likely to reach above 40 degrees Celsius.

Some fires are generating plumes of smoke that are so vast, they appear as rain on the bureau's radar.

In addition, NSW RFS Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons said that low rainfall and higher-than-average temperatures could result in fires ravaging the country for weeks or even months.

The season has hit sooner than regular and has been exacerbated by drought circumstances.

The BOM says that local weather change has led to a rise in excessive warmth occasions and raised the severity of different pure disasters, akin to drought. It additionally warned that Australia's coming summer season was predicted to deliver comparable circumstances to final yr's - the nation's hottest summer season on report. PM Scott Morrison has dismissed accusations linking the crisis to his government's policies.

Hundreds of bushfire survivors and farmers converged on the nation's capital, Canberra, this week in protest.

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