Follow live updates as Canadian wildfire smoke pollutes the air across North America
A plume of smoke drifted over the northern United States on Tuesday from Canada, where hundreds of wildfires were burning, prompting aerial warnings from Minnesota to Massachusetts.
In Ontario, smog blanketed parts of Ottawa and Toronto, while Canadian officials warned residents of poor air quality as smoke drifted into parts of New York state and Vermont. All of New York City was under an air quality alert Tuesday due to smog; By late afternoon, the Manhattan skyline was obscured by a hazy sky.
More than 400 wildfires were burning across Canada on Tuesday Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre, worsening an already active wildfire season that is expected to worsen. More than 200 fires are burning out of control, the agency said.
In eastern Canada, Quebec was the hardest hit by wildfires as of Tuesday afternoon, with more than 150 fires burning across the region, the fire agency said. Residents in some areas were encouraged to close their windows and doors, Local authorities in Quebec said.
Videos and pictures showed some of the fires burning for miles, sending plumes of dark smoke into the sky.
at one o’clock News conference On Monday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he had been in contact with local authorities across Canada about the fires.
“It’s a terrible time for a lot of people,” Mr. Trudeau said.
As of Monday, 26,000 people have been evacuated from their homes across Canada due to wildfires, Canadian Public Safety Minister Bill Blair told a news conference.
“The films we’ve seen so far this season are some of the harshest we’ve ever seen in Canada,” said Mr. Blair said.
Many Canadians who had to evacuate in recent days had to pack hours before leaving their homes, Mr. Trudeau said.
“When people lose their homes, they don’t just lose a roof and their belongings,” Mr. Trudeau said. “They are missing a special place where they saw their children grow up, where they made a life for themselves. It’s incredibly difficult and heartbreaking.
Smoke plumes from the wildfires moved south across the border on Tuesday, creating hazy skies and prompting the U.S. National Weather Service to issue air quality warnings for the upper Great Lakes and the Northeast.
Large parts of Minnesota remained under an air quality warning until Tuesday evening. The weather service said, light winds blew across Minnesota from wildfires in Quebec. Smoke from Lake Superior also drifted into the state.
Weather officials warned that people who are more sensitive to poor air quality, such as people with lung disease and heart disease, children and the elderly, should limit some outdoor activities.
Air quality warnings were in place until midnight in New York City and several New York counties. New York Mayor Eric Adams said Twitter New Yorkers with heart or breathing problems should limit their time to “absolute necessities.” Similar warnings were issued for parts of Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont.
Toronto and New York City Sorted out briefly It was among the top 10 major cities with the worst air quality on Tuesday, according to IQAir, a technology company that monitors air quality and pollution around the world. Historically, Toronto and New York City have not ranked in the top 3,000 cities with worst air quality. IQAir.
Poor air quality is expected to continue through Wednesday in New York and much of the New York City area. New York State Department of Environmental Protection.
Satellite images of North America on Tuesday showed light brown smoke billowing south from the fire. The smoke was thick in parts of Quebec, Ontario and New York. Foggy conditions may reach as far south as the Carolinas.
In addition to poor air quality, smoke from wildfires can create vivid, reddish sunsets. New Yorkers saw it last month Smoke from Canadian wildfires has moved south.
Such sunsets and poor air quality could continue this summer if wildfires continue to burn across Canada, said John Christandello, a meteorologist with the Weather Service in New York.
Public Safety Minister Mr. Blair said. Other government agencies were on standby in case the wildfires damaged critical infrastructure, Mr. Blair said.
Mr. Forecasts indicate “it could be a tough wildfire season all summer long,” Trudeau said Monday.
To date, more than 2,200 wildfires have already broken out in Canada this year, according to the country’s fire agency.