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Canada’s Smoke from Fires is Back

Thursday– Canadian fire smoke is back in the United States. By Saturday, a hazing cloud of smoke may intersect with the tri-state area and the majority of the Northeast quadrant. Folks came to Twitter and all over social media to post pictures and videos of the yellowish-orange skies along with the overwhelming, visible smoke in the air. 

When Did the Canadian Fires Start?

The fires began in late April. However, in early May, the fires became so severe that the government had to take the initiative and begin evacuations. 

The very dry conditions in Canada and the increased global warming had raised a higher probability for the fires to start. In this case, the fires were ignited by a strike of lighting, according to the NWS. 

The Burning Continues

The fires are currently burning over approximately 1.2 million acres of British Columbia land. It has even gone as far as the outskirts of Alaska. As it stands, Canada is on track to have its worst fire season ever from the destruction of land and distance burned down. 

Yan Boulanger, a researcher with Natural Resources Canada, said, “Over the last 20 years, we have never seen such a large area burned so early in the season. Because of climate change, we are seeing trends toward increased burnings.” 

The NWS reported that an average of about one square mile would be burned in previous years by June 5. 

Still, just a week into the summer season, researchers are worried that the fires could be expected to remain a concern for the entire season, as long as they continue. 

Air Quality Index

Air quality has seen a plummet. The usual index of green, indicating 0-100, was the average in New Jersey. Air quality can be slightly dangerous for some groups in the orange index. Finally, in the red index, the air quality is unhealthy for everyone. Today, on June 29, 2023, the index was averaging around 150. 

“If you have to exert yourself, exert yourself less. Hydrate more,” said Dr. Leonardo Trasande, who studies environmental health at New York University.


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