According to the Government of Canada, some 26,206 people have been evacuated in the current season that authorities describe as ¨unprecedented.¨ Data from the Ministry of Natural Resources indicate that so far this year there have been 2,214 forest fires, which have consumed 3.3 million hectares of forest.
The Ministry of Natural Resources points out that the average for the last decade was 1,624 fires and 254,429 hectares consumed. Authorities warn that the North American country could register a record number of burned areas during the year.
¨Every province and territory will need to be on high alert throughout this wildfire season,¨ said Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson. Wilkinson warned at a news conference that wildfire risks will increase this month and remain unusually high throughout the summer in the country.
Today, the Government of Canada provided an update on the #wildfire seasonal outlook and the continuing efforts to support Canadians through this year’s fire season and future seasons.
The country's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told a news conference in Ottawa that the government is "developing contingency plans" in case the situation worsens. According to Trudeau, Canada is expected to have sufficient resources to cover the summer months.
Ottawa is providing federal assistance to Quebec, Alberta, and Nova Scotia, three provinces hard hit by the fires. There are more than 160 fires in Quebec, where thousands of people were forced from their homes in the northwest of the province over the weekend.
Alberta, put an end to a province-wide state of emergency as the situation improved in the last hours, while the fires have already consumed more than one million hectares of forest.
In Nova Scotia, firefighters have brought flames under control near the city of Halifax, which damaged or destroyed at least 150 suburban residences. The largest wildfire in the province's history was still burning out of control in Shelburne County.
Local emergency crews from across the country are on the ground with support from the Canadian military and international firefighting services. Personnel from the U.S., Australia, New Zealand and South Africa have been deployed. Crews from Costa Rica, France and Chile are also expected to arrive.
#Canada | Authorities in the western province of Alberta said some 25,000 people are under evacuation orders, while 110 wildfires have burned about 121,909 hectares in that region. pic.twitter.com/fkh1dFDadI