Canadian Wildfires Pt 2

Canadian Wildfires Pt 2

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
From the Ag Information Network, I’m Bob Larson. Some of the stories about this year’s Canadian wildfires and the smoke that’s polluted the skies in American cities might lead you to believe the fires are something new.

Well, Cliff Mass, Atmospheric Sciences Professor at the University of Washington, says May is the beginning of wildfire season in Canada’s northern territory, but …

MASS … “This year we’ve had this wind field that’s been moving. Not only are the fires pretty big, but the winds are blowing into populated areas. It blew it first to us and then to the East Coast.”

And, Mass says, it’s caused by the same system that changed California’s weather this year …

MASS … “This pattern is really behind all of this, with this trough over California. And associated, there is this ridge to the Northeast of it in the Southern part of Canada. So, there’s this trough-ridge pattern that’s just locked in and that’s been the problem.”

But, Mass says, it probably won’t last forever …

MASS … “As we get more into mid-summer, I expect it to lift. And the Jetstream is going to weaken, and this trough-ridge stuff is going to push northwards. So, I think it undoubtedly, we’ll lose this pattern. But that’s what’s behind it all and we’ve had this pattern for a long time. So, it’s not a climate change story. It’s a pattern locking in story.”

Check out for more of Cliff’s perspective on weather matters.

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