A thick blanket of smoke from wildfires burning in Canada is still across the United States, causing air quality alerts and health concerns.
It has put more than 80 million people across the Midwest and East Coast under air quality alerts. The alerts are in effect for the entire states of Delaware, Indiana, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Maryland, and Iowa. Parts of Ohio, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, and New York have also been affected.
The smoke has been seen as far south as the Gulf Coast and as far east as the Atlantic Ocean. It has also reached the Great Lakes, causing hazy skies and poor air quality.
The smoke is a result of the unprecedented wildfire season in Canada. So far this year, more than 10 million acres have burned in Canada, making it the third-worst wildfire season on record. The fires have been driven by hot, dry weather and high winds.
The smoke from the wildfires is a health hazard.
It can irritate the eyes, nose, and throat and worsen respiratory problems such as asthma and bronchitis. It can also cause headaches, nausea, and dizziness.
The smoke is also a hazard to air travel. It can reduce visibility and make it difficult for pilots to see the ground. This has caused flight delays and cancellations in some parts of the country.
What can be done about the smoke?
There is no easy solution to the problem of wildfire smoke. However, a few things can be done to reduce the impact of the smoke on air quality and public health.
- Stay indoors: If the air quality is poor, it is best to stay indoors—close windows and doors to keep the smoke out.
- Use an air purifier: If you must go outside, use an air purifier to help remove the smoke from the air.
- Avoid strenuous activity: If you must go outside, avoid strenuous activity. This will help to reduce your exposure to the smoke.
- Take medication: If you have respiratory problems, take your medication as prescribed. This will help to protect your lungs from the smoke.
Will this be a thing now?
Wildfire smoke is a growing problem in the United States. As the climate changes, we can expect to see more frequent and intense wildfires. This means that we will also see more smoke from wildfires.
We need to take steps to reduce the impact of wildfire smoke on air quality and public health. This includes investing in fire prevention and suppression and developing better air quality monitoring and early warning systems.
We also need to educate the public about the dangers of wildfire smoke and how to protect themselves. By working together, we can reduce the impact of wildfire smoke and keep our communities safe.