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Wildfire Risk Remains Well Above Average Across Canada This Month

Courtesy of Barrie 360 and Canadian PressPublished: Jun 5th,

Ottawa

An area of land 11 times bigger than the city of Toronto burned from wildfires in the last four days — Canada’s worst spring wildfire season to date.

Another 389 fires were recorded since June 1, and as of Monday morning there were 413 active fires underway, with the risk having spread to more provinces over the weekend.

Nearly 250 of those were out of control in nine provinces and two territories.

Mike Norton, the director general of the Northern Forestry Centre at the Department of Natural Resources, said having this many fires from coast to coast at this time of year is not normal. 

And the outlook for the rest of the season remains dire.

In June the risk is well above average in every province and territory except Newfoundland and Labrador, where the risk is a little lower but still above average.

Statistics compiled by the Canada Interagency Forest Fire Centre show more than 7,300 square kilometres of land burned in the last four days.

That is nearly three times the average amount that has normally burned in the first five months of the year.

The federal government stands with people across the country “who are enduring this painful, heartbreaking time,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told a news conference Monday.

Modelling shows that it might be an especially severe wildfire season throughout the summer, Trudeau said.

“We’re going to get through this together and our government will keep being there with whatever it takes to keep people safe and provide support,” he said.

“This is a scary time for a lot of people, not just in Alberta, but right across the country, including in the Atlantic, the North and Quebec, too.”

Feds Warn 2023 On Track To Be The Worst Fire Season Ever Seen In Canada

424 FIRES ARE BURNING ACROSS CANADA, 250 OUT OF CONTROL

Courtesy of Barrie 360 and Canadian PressPublished: Jun 6th, 2023

Canada’s emergency preparedness minister says images of wildfires burning across the country are some of the most severe ever witnessed in Canada and the current forecast for the next few months indicates the potential for continued higher−than−normal fire activity.

Bill Blair and six other federal cabinet ministers provided an update Monday on Canada’s wildfire situation, even as smoke from fires north and west of the city covered Parliament Hill’s Peace Tower in a grey haze.

The BC Wildfire Service says the Donnie Creek wildfire, which has grown to more than 2,400 square kilometres in size, is now considered the second largest in provincial history, while Nova Scotia’s largest-ever wildfire continues to burn out of control.

Environment Canada has issued a special air quality statement for a large section of southern Ontario, with the agency warning of high levels of air pollution as a result of smoke plumes from local forest fires as well as forest fires in Quebec.

As of late Monday afternoon, 424 fires were burning across Canada, more than 250 of which are considered out of control.

A new fire risk forecast shows that risk remains well above average in parts of every province and territory except Newfoundland and Labrador, where the risk in most of Labrador is still above average, while the risk in Newfoundland is just average.

Patricia Dent

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