A Canadian firefighter has joined the chorus of voices sharing information about a series of wildfires currently spreading across Canada. Smoke from the fires rolled into New York City on June 7, covering the city in a hazy orange glow. Authorities have cautioned residents against going outside unless absolutely necessary and to don an n95 mask if braving the smoke.
Many who live on the West Coast of the U.S. are accustomed to seasons spent in a wildfire haze. But the experience is a new one for the Northeast. And according to a large-scale fire expert familiar with these kinds of wildfires, there’s an update on what we can expect in the long term.
The firefighter was quoted by The Hotshot Wake Up, a podcast and newsletter that covers “news about wildfires, fire tech, and wildfire policy.” They begin by explaining that in “large areas of [Canada’s] jurisdictions, especially in the northern part of the country, wildfires are left to run their natural course w little or no[…] suppression. We’ll protect[…] infrastructure, communities, critical habitat, or culturally significant features on the landscape[…] but we are not putting them out.”
About 90 percent of Canada’s population lives within 100 miles of the U.S. border, by some estimates, while the vast majority of the fires are fartbelow the 49th paralel
In this firefighter’s experience, nature is going to have to play a hand in putting out the fires.
“The only thing that is going to put out this fire and many across the country is winter, 5 months from now,” the Tweet explains. “It’s going to be a long, smoky summer for everyone.” Sounds like it’s time to stock up on n95 masks and air filters.