Wildfire smoke from Canada has returned to the U.S., this time striking the upper Midwest. Such smoke poses health risks to millions of Americans, especially those with underlying conditions in affected regions.
Air quality reached unhealthy levels Tuesday and alerts were issued in major cities like Chicago, Detroit and Minneapolis. These poor air-quality alerts are expected to remain in effect through Thursday, according to the National Weather Service. “It does look like it’s going to be around basically through late Thursday and into early Friday in the Midwest," said David Brown, an air-quality meteorologist with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, of the smoke.
Brown added that a lot of the smoke is going to start shifting more toward the east, into New York, western Pennsylvania and Ohio starting Wednesday morning before expanding southward. “I would expect that air quality across the east and northeast will start to deteriorate probably beginning Wednesday afternoon," he said, adding that the smoke will probably linger there through the weekend.
Earlier this month, smoke from the more than 400 fires burning in Canada shrouded parts of the U.S. Northeast and New England, causing New York City to be ranked among some of the worst cities in the world for air quality at the time.