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  • anil pendse

    Kuwait oil well burning !!


    Oil well fires burn in Kuwait during the 1991 Persian Gulf War. As Iraq pulled out from Kuwait during the Persian Gulf War in 1991, Iraqi troops set fire to some 650 oil wells. The environmental devastation was enormous. This Landsat image, among many others, was crucial for Kuwaiti emergency responders to figure out where the fires were burning and how best to approach them.

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The Gulf War (2 August 1990 – 28 February 1991), Liberation of Kuwait codenamed Operation Desert Storm (January 17, 1991– February 28, 1991) commonly referred to as simply the Gulf War, was a war waged by a U.N.-authorized coalition force from 34 nations led by the United States, against Iraq in response to Iraq's invasion and annexation of Kuwait.

The Devil's Cigarette Lighter was a natural gas well fire at Gassi Touil in the Sahara Desert of Algeria. Ignited when a pipe ruptured on November 6, 1961, the Phillips Petroleum Company-owned well produced more than 6,000 cubic feet of natural gas per second, whose flame rose between 450 feet and 800 feet. The flame was seen from orbit by John Glenn. The blowout and fire were estimated to have consumed enough gas to supply Paris for three months, burning 550,000,000 cubic feet per day.

Gulf war oil fields. Link to other photos.

Burning oil wells in Kuwait, 1991. Photo credit to Steve McCurry, who took MANY amazing shots during that conflict.

As the 1991 Persian Gulf War drew to a close, Hussein sent men to blow up Kuwaiti oil wells. Approximately 600 were set ablaze, and the fires — literally towering infernos — burned for seven months. The Gulf was awash in poisonous smoke, soot and ash.

Kurdish boy injured by an Iraqi napalm bomb at the end of the Gulf War. Near Isikveren, Turkey, 1991. © Peter Turnley / Corbis 1991.

USS Theodore Roosevelt transiting the Suez Canal on its way to the Persian Gulf 1991


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