Smoke from recent wildfires in Nova Scotia in eastern Canada has made its way down the U.S. East Coast, covering much of New Jersey and surrounding areas under a veil of smoke. Due to the abundance of smoke, an air quality alert has been issued for the area.
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has issued a Code ORANGE air quality alert Wednesday for the entire state. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection also issued an Code ORANGE alert for Wednesday for the Lehigh Valley, the Susquehanna Valley, and Berks County areas. The Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission issued the same for the entire Philadelphia metro region.
The smoke from the Nova Scotia fires would eventually make its way to the U.S. Mid Atlantic Coast! https://t.co/x36Ge8elW5
— the Weatherboy (@theWeatherboy) May 30, 2023
A Code ORANGE Air Quality alert means that air pollution concentrations within the region may become unhealthy for sensitive groups. Sensitive groups include children, people suffering from asthma, heart disease, or other lung diseases, and the elderly. The impacts of air pollution can be minimized by avoiding strenuous activity or exercise outdoors.
More than 16,000 people were ordered to evacuate from Halifax, Nova Scotia due to wildfires that broke out there over the weekend. Authorities in Halifax report that at least 200 buildings were damaged or destroyed by the fire; as of press time, there were no deaths or injuries reported or confirmed. This morning, Nova Scotia’s Department of Natural Resources and Renewables said that the wildfire consumed at least 1,950 acres of land and continues to burn out of control. There has been another large fire in nearby Yarmouth, Nova Scotia over the weekend, adding to the volume of smoke in the area.
High pressure over the northeast with low pressure to the south and east is helping funnel smoke down the coast right into New Jersey, where the smoke is the most dense.