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TUESDAY January 4, 2022: 'URBAN Firestorm' by ZUMA Press award winning photographer Jeremy Sparig of the Colorado Sun: Alongside a lingering global pandemic, the year 2021 was filled with climate disasters, some so intense they surprised even the scientists who study them. Extreme rainstorms turned to raging flash floods that swept through mountain towns in Europe, killing over 200 people. Across Asia, excessive rainfall inundated wide areas and flooded subway stations in China. Heat waves shattered records in the Pacific Northwest, Europe and the Arctic. Wildfires swept through communities in California, Canada, Greece and Australia. The area around Boulder was so unusually dry on Dec. 30, 2021, that a powerful wind storm sent grass fires racing through neighborhoods in Superior and Louisville, burning hundreds of homes in a matter of hours. Officials said the winds were so strong, there was little firefighters could do but evacuate homes and businesses in the fires' paths. The fire damaged or destroyed between $819 million and $1.6 billion worth of homes, which would make it the 10th costliest fire in US history. Welcome to 'URBAN Firestorm'
© zReportage.com Story of the Week #820: TUESDAY January 4, 2022: 'URBAN Firestorm' by ZUMA Press award winning photographer Jeremy Sparig of the Colorado Sun: Alongside a lingering global pandemic, the year 2021 was filled with climate disasters, some so intense they surprised even the scientists who study them. Extreme rainstorms turned to raging flash floods that swept through mountain towns in Europe, killing over 200 people. Across Asia, excessive rainfall inundated wide areas and flooded subway stations in China. Heat waves shattered records in the Pacific Northwest, Europe and the Arctic. Wildfires swept through communities in California, Canada, Greece and Australia. The area around Boulder was so unusually dry on Dec. 30, 2021, that a powerful wind storm sent grass fires racing through neighborhoods in Superior and Louisville, burning hundreds of homes in a matter of hours. Officials said the winds were so strong, there was little firefighters could do but evacuate homes and businesses in the fires' paths. The fire damaged or destroyed between $819 million and $1.6 billion worth of homes, which would make it the 10th costliest fire in US history. Welcome to 'URBAN Firestorm'
The sun is hazy and obscured by smoke from the Marshall Fire at McCaslin Boulvard in the town of Superior. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Superior, Colorado, USA: The sun is hazy and obscured by smoke from the Marshall Fire at McCaslin Boulvard in the town of Superior. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
A couple standing on a nearby hill overlooking Superior watch as the Marshal fire burns along Colorado Highway 128 at Ridge Parkway. Just a day before the new year, 100-plus-mph winds carried the most destructive fire in Colorado history through the suburban sprawl of greater Denver, destroying much of the towns of Louisville and Superior and forcing tens of thousands to flee. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire) © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Superior, Colorado, USA: A couple standing on a nearby hill overlooking Superior watch as the Marshal fire burns along Colorado Highway 128 at Ridge Parkway. Just a day before the new year, 100-plus-mph winds carried the most destructive fire in Colorado history through the suburban sprawl of greater Denver, destroying much of the towns of Louisville and Superior and forcing tens of thousands to flee. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
Emergency service workers gather in the parking lot of Flatirons Crossing Mall to coordinate efforts to fight the Marshall Fire. Driven by 110 mph winds, the Marshall Fire ripped through Louisville and Superior consuming 6,200 acres and destroyed 991 homes. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: Emergency service workers gather in the parking lot of Flatirons Crossing Mall to coordinate efforts to fight the Marshall Fire. Driven by 110 mph winds, the Marshall Fire ripped through Louisville and Superior consuming 6,200 acres and destroyed 991 homes. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
The Marshal Fire burns near homes overlooking the town of Superior, along Colorado Highway 128 at Ridge Parkway. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Superior, Colorado, USA: The Marshal Fire burns near homes overlooking the town of Superior, along Colorado Highway 128 at Ridge Parkway. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
Smoke from the Marshall Fire looms over houses looking North on McCaslin Boulevard in Superior. These homes were all destroyed by Friday morning as the Marshall Fire ripped through Boulder county. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Superior, Colorado, USA: Smoke from the Marshall Fire looms over houses looking North on McCaslin Boulevard in Superior. These homes were all destroyed by Friday morning as the Marshall Fire ripped through Boulder county. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
A burning home is reflected in the front door of a home across the street as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: A burning home is reflected in the front door of a home across the street as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
A home goes up in flames in Louisville as the Marshall Fire continued to burn into the night, driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. The Marshall Fire was only 6,000 acres, small compared to the megafires of the last few years. But after the driest and second-warmest fall in 150 years, the devastation was out of proportion to its scale, and unlike most wildfires, it was not in wildland or forest but was in an urban area. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: A home goes up in flames in Louisville as the Marshall Fire continued to burn into the night, driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. The Marshall Fire was only 6,000 acres, small compared to the megafires of the last few years. But after the driest and second-warmest fall in 150 years, the devastation was out of proportion to its scale, and unlike most wildfires, it was not in wildland or forest but was in an urban area. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
Emergency services vehicle races past a burn area as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. Just a day before the new year, 100-plus-mph winds carried the most destructive fire in Colorado history through the suburban sprawl of greater Denver, destroying much of the towns of Louisville and Superior and forcing tens of thousands to flee. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Superior, Colorado, USA: Emergency services vehicle races past a burn area as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. Just a day before the new year, 100-plus-mph winds carried the most destructive fire in Colorado history through the suburban sprawl of greater Denver, destroying much of the towns of Louisville and Superior and forcing tens of thousands to flee. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
Fire crews attempt to stop fire jumping to other buildings as the Marshall Fire continued to burn in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: Fire crews attempt to stop fire jumping to other buildings as the Marshall Fire continued to burn in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
Fire crews work to stop the fires spreading to other homes as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: Fire crews work to stop the fires spreading to other homes as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
Firefighter TASSO KOCH speaks on his radio in front of a burning home on Trail Ridge Drive, Louisville as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: Firefighter TASSO KOCH speaks on his radio in front of a burning home on Trail Ridge Drive, Louisville as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
Fire crews work to stop the fires spreading to other homes as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: Fire crews work to stop the fires spreading to other homes as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
Fire crews work to stop the fires spreading to other homes as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: Fire crews work to stop the fires spreading to other homes as the Marshall Fire continued to burn driven by 110 mph winds in Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
A burned out car and entire subdivision destroyed at Eldorado Lane and Larkspur Lane in Louisville, as the Marshall Fire sweeps through Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: A burned out car and entire subdivision destroyed at Eldorado Lane and Larkspur Lane in Louisville, as the Marshall Fire sweeps through Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
Homes burn amid the firestorm stoked by high winds in West Pine and Owl Drive in Louisville, Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© December 30, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: Homes burn amid the firestorm stoked by high winds in West Pine and Owl Drive in Louisville, Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
As snow falls, a pedestrian walks past burned homes and damage from the Marshall Fire in Louisville. The fire consumed 6,200 acres and destroyed 991 homes. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© Dec 31, 2021, Louisville, Colorado, USA: As snow falls, a pedestrian walks past burned homes and damage from the Marshall Fire in Louisville. The fire consumed 6,200 acres and destroyed 991 homes. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
A destroyed building on trail Ridge Road in Louisville after the Marshall Fire ripped through Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© January 2, 2022, Louisville, Colorado, USA: A destroyed building on trail Ridge Road in Louisville after the Marshall Fire ripped through Boulder County. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
The view west from Trail Ridge Road, shows destroyed homes in Louisville, after the Marshall Fire consumed 6,200 acres and destroyed 991 homes. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire)
© January 2, 2022, Louisville, Colorado, USA: The view west from Trail Ridge Road, shows destroyed homes in Louisville, after the Marshall Fire consumed 6,200 acres and destroyed 991 homes. (Credit image © Jeremy Sparig/Colorado Sun/ZUMA Press Wire
Jeremy Sparig

Jeremy Sparig is a ZUMA Contract Photographer based in Denver, Colorado and shoots regularly for the Colorado Sun newspaper. Jeremy's images are published worldwide through his picture agency ZUMA Press and he is available for assignments in Colorado.:820



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