New York City residents are bracing themselves for the imminent arrival of smoke and a decline in air quality as the pollution from the raging wildfires in Canada makes its way toward the bustling metropolis.

Canada wildfire smoke: New York City has world's worst air pollution
Canada wildfire smoke: New York City has world’s worst air pollution | CNBC

Canadian Wildfires Alert

A statewide air quality advisory has been issued, covering all of New York State, including the five boroughs, and is set to remain in effect until Thursday. Governor Hochul has issued a warning specifically to high-risk populations, urging children, older adults, and individuals with pre-existing respiratory and cardiac conditions to minimize their outdoor exposure and wear masks while outside. As of Wednesday evening, the air quality in Manhattan still met safety standards for most residents. However, experts anticipate that the smoke will descend closer to ground level during the nighttime, leading to rapidly deteriorating conditions that could pose health risks, particularly for individuals sensitive to smoke.

Thankfully, this episode of smoke is not expected to be as severe as the one experienced earlier in June, as meteorologist Dominic Ramunni from the National Weather Service points out. Nonetheless, Governor Hochul emphasizes the importance of remaining vigilant and taking necessary precautions to ensure personal safety.

Mayor Adams acknowledges that the city’s air quality will be impacted by the smoke on Thursday and intermittently in the upcoming weeks. He advises all New Yorkers to stay updated on air quality reports and adjust their outdoor activities accordingly. Depending on individual sensitivity to poor air quality, modifying plans and taking additional precautions may be prudent.

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While recent rainfall has helped keep the smoke at bay, Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos notes that a cold front accompanied by winds from the Midwest has brought the smoke to New York City on Wednesday afternoon. The smoke is predicted to dissipate more slowly than it arrived, lingering in the state until at least Friday, with the most significant concentration affecting upstate regions.

To mitigate the effects of compromised air quality, N95-style masks will be distributed free of charge at various locations throughout the city, including Grand Central Station, Penn Station, Atlantic Ave. in Brooklyn, and the Grand Concourse in the Bronx.

As the smoke permeates the city’s atmosphere, residents are advised to stay informed and prioritize their well-being in the face of declining air quality. For more information, visit New York Daily News.

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