Smoke from wildfires in Canada that blanketed much of North America this week and created dangerous respiratory conditions is expected to drift over Norway on Thursday, but it won’t cause problems for people, environmental officials said.
The scientists of the Institute for Climate and Environmental Research in Norway it used forecasting models to predict how smoke from the hundreds of wildfires burning across Canada would move through the atmosphere.
Since 1 June, smoke has drifted over Greenland and Iceland, and observations in southern Norway have confirmed increased aerosol concentrations.
« We may be able to see some haze or smell smoke, » Nikolaos Evangeliou, a senior scientist at the institute, said in a statement. « However, we don’t believe that the number of particles in the air here in Norway will be large enough to be harmful to our health. »
In addition to causing health problems for sensitive groups, such as those with lung problems, smoke particles can also negatively impact global warming, the institute said.
Smoke and soot particles that settle on surfaces covered in ice and snow, such as the Greenland ice sheet, can darken the surface, causing it to absorb solar radiation and thus contribute to warming of the atmosphere.
« All in all, from current forecasts we see that the plume will arrive weakly in Europe in the coming days, » Evangeliou said on Thursday. “However, if these fires continue to produce more smoke every day, the situation could get worse. However, the likelihood of any serious effects on air quality is low. »