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Air quality alerts issued in Nova Scotia as wildfires burn

Environment Canada has issued air quality alerts for Shelburne County and western Halifax County due to the presence of wildfire smokes.

The statements say that smoke has reduced visibility and air quality in areas downwind of the fires. The smoke is currently being transported eastward in a west wind. The smoke will move southeastward later Sunday evening as the wind direction becomes northwest.

Smoke plumes from three wildfires in the Maritimes visible on satellite imagery. One in southwestern N.B., one in southwestern N.S., and one in Halifax County, N.S. Those source area marked with a red X.

The statements recommend to "stop or reduce your activity level if breathing becomes uncomfortable or you or someone in your care feel unwell. Contact your health care provider or local health authority if you develop severe symptoms or need advice".

Current air quality observation sites near Halifax have the index rated as 4 or moderate risk.

Much of Nova Scotia is under a no-burn order with the wildfire danger assessed as high-to-extreme by Natural Resources Canada. New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island also have elevated fire danger ratings.

The fire danger risk is rated high-to-extreme for large areas of the Maritimes.

There is little good news in the weather forecast for helping combat the wildfires. A weak cold front is dropping north to south across the region tonight. The front will cool temperatures and turn winds to a more north/northwest direction. There is no significant rain associated with the front.

Despite cooler temperatures on Monday, the air will remain quite dry with low, relative humidity. A north wind with gusts of 30 to 50 km/h will continue through Monday morning into early afternoon. The wind is forecast to diminish late afternoon into evening.

High pressure will be in place for much of the upcoming week. It may be as late in the week as Friday before we have a chance of more widespread rain or showers. Top Stories

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