On the east coast there is a haze caused by the Canadian wildfires

Climate Change and Wildfires in Canada: From a Fire Season to a Global Phenomenology of Extreme Weather Events, Revisited

The director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at Columbia University told NPR this week that this is a situation that he thinks everyone should pay attention to.

“Make no mistake,” New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said in a tweet Wednesday, “from the wildfires in Canada to those cropping up with increasing frequency and severity in our own backyard, these extreme weather events are tangible — and devastating — evidence of the intensifying climate crisis.”

Due to the hot and dry conditions created by the climate change, experts believe wildfire seasons are becoming longer and the blazes are burning more acres.

The air quality across the U.S. had “plummeted” by the National Weather Service on Tuesday and by Wednesday morning images of grayish smoky air were widely seen on social media.

This year’s fire season in Canada is “unprecedented” and may become record-breaking, says Flannigan. Hundreds of fires have been burning in Canada—some for days or weeks—usually started by human activity or lightning, then fed by dry vegetation, and worsened by hot, dry, windy weather. Rising warm air on land has lofted that smoke to between 5,000 feet and 20,000 feet high, where the haze gets rapidly transported south and east in strong winds.

New York City’s public school system canceled all outdoor activites on wednesday due to the weather. Washington, D.C., public schools did the same, scrapping recess, outdoor physical education classes and other events outside.

How much air pollution does it take to spread Covid-19? A study by DeCarlo, a professor of environmental health and engineering at Johns Hopkins University

DeCarlo doesn’t think the concentrations will go up too much unless more fires start burning. The next couple days are going to see a shift in the weather pattern which will push the smoke away from us.

Peter DeCarlo, an associate professor of environmental health and engineering at Johns Hopkins University, told NPR that weather conditions in the U.S. were making it possible for wildfire smoke to spread over the region.

Some people were urged to stay inside, avoid travel and refrain from vigorous activity in order to be safe.

In addition to reduced visibility and a smoky smell, public health experts warned that poor air quality could be especially harmful to people with heart and lung disease, the elderly and young children.

Millions of people along the East Coast and further inland woke up to a cloud of hazy air Wednesday morning, after smoke from rampant wildfires in Canada floated south across the border and blanketed large swaths of the U.S.

Exposure to this kind of pollution can also weaken the immune system. According to the study, Covid-19 cases and deaths in California, Oregon, and Washington were made worse by increases in fine particulate air pollution from wildfire smoke. “Whether it’s Covid or any other virus, this is a time to avoid not only exposure to fine outdoor matter, but also really trying not to get sick,” says Francesca Dominici, a professor of biostatistics, population, and data science at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health who worked on the study. Your ability to fight the virus doesn’t work as well as it should.

Reduce your exposure to the particulate matter in wildfire smoke by staying indoors as much as possible, wearing an N95 or a similar respirator outside and limiting strenuous activity.

What to Do if You’re Wilded and You Must Pack for Your Pet During High-Velocity Wildfires

If your family needs to evacuate, experts recommend you keep a go bag for your pet with everything from food to water, medicine and first aid supplies.

When the air quality is low, the American Veterinary Medical Association advises animals to stay indoors as much as possible and for brief bathroom breaks outside. Birds are not allowed to go outside when it’s smoky.

University of Denver professor Alex Huffman told Colorado Public Radio that people can also monitor the air quality around them, use a high-quality air filter in their homes and seal up openings in their doors and windows.

Air quality can be quantified using a scale that goes from zero to 500, with a lower number indicating better air quality and anything over 300 being hazardous.

But smaller particulate matter (called PM2.5) is apparently even worse, since the fine particles can get into the deeper parts of your lungs and your blood.

These are tiny solid and liquid droplets that hang in the air and can be harmful to human health. Wildfires are a major source of particulate matter in the air.

Here’s a breakdown of some of the more technical wildfire-related terms you might hear and what experts say are some of the best ways to protect yourself and your loved ones.

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