What to Know About Canadas Exceptional Wildfire Season

Logo The New York TimesThe New York Times
2023-06-10 02:42:29  • 5 mins

Wild fires started earlier, are higher in number and spread across much of the country, burning millions of acres as climate change turns more of the countrys forest into a tinderbox.

Canada is burning.

That, at least, is the perception around the world as hundreds of fires have convulsed the country, forced tens of thousands of people to flee and sounded a global alarm about the perils of climate change.

In a nation famed for its orderliness, the out-of-control fires have created the ominous feeling of a country under siege, stretching from the west to the east coasts and sending toxic plumes over major cities like Ottawa, the capital, Toronto, the largest city and financial capital, and Montreal.

As the smoke poured into the United States, disrupting life around the Northeast, and turning New York Citys skyline an apocalyptic orange hue, the fires also underscored how environmental disasters dont obey borders.

Heres what you need to know about the fires and Canadas wildfire season.

Wildfire season started early this year.

While wildfires are common in spring and summer in much of Canada, they usually burn in remote and sparsely populated areas. But this years fires have already been remarkable: Hundreds are burning across much of the country.

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