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New York, United States. Very bad air quality. Fires in Canada

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New York has become one of the most polluted large cities in the world. Air quality has been hazardous to health for several days, with residents complaining of breathing problems. It’s all due to thick smoke from forest fires in Canada, which is pouring over the northeastern United States.

Canada has been battling record forest fires for over a month. According to the Canadian Interagency Center for Fighting Forest Fires (CIFFC), there were 437 fires burning in the country on Thursday, of which 248 were unable to be controlled by firefighters. Since the beginning of the year, the fire has consumed a total of 4.2 million hectares of forest land.

New York. Dangerous levels of pollution

Thick smoke from the fires is pouring over the northeastern United States. Very high concentrations of particulate matter PM 2.5 were recorded in many states – poor air quality was even observed in the city of Virginia Beach in Virginia, 900 kilometers from the Canadian border.

The air in New York was more polluted than any other major city in the world on Wednesday night, local media reported. The level of PM 2.5 was ten times higher than the standard set by the World Health Organization (WHO). Poor air quality continues in the region on Thursday night, with the worst air quality recorded in Philadelphia and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

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“Breathing is very difficult,” a city resident told Reuters.

Poor air quality in New York City Reuters

Poor air quality in New York City Reuters

Mayor Eric Adams urged New Yorkers with heart or respiratory conditions to “limit outdoor activities to absolute necessity.” The smoke also reduced visibility in the city, resulting in traffic jams.

United States air quality map, June 8, 23AirNow

Interrupted show

The nation’s largest public school district, New York City, canceled all outdoor activities on Wednesday. Schools remained open, but many principals decided to postpone field trips to another date. On Broadway, the show had to be stopped just 10 minutes after the curtain rose when the lead actress complained of breathing problems.

Adams noted that all outdoor city events will be canceled and beaches will be closed. Several matches were postponed on Wednesday by professional sports teams. In the afternoon of that day, the Federal Aviation Administration ordered a halt to flights from all over the country to New York’s LaGuardia Airport due to heavy smoke.

New York State Governor Kathy Hochul called the situation “unprecedented”, noting that the air pollution index in parts of the state was eight times higher than normal. She added that some residents complained of difficulty breathing even in their own homes.

Poor air quality in New York City Reuters

Poor air quality in New York City Reuters

Main photo source: Reuters

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