April 29, 2024

CANADA: Forestry Minister Confirmed 100% Of Alberta's Wildfires Caused By Humans So Far This Year. Last Year 60% Of The 1,088 Fires That Burned In The Forest Were Started By Humans.

Look at Alberta, Canada. Woah. I took this screenshot today at this website: https://data.newsleader.com/fires/
cpac pubilshed April 24, 2024: Alberta forestry minister provides update on wildfire situation. At a news conference in Edmonton, Todd Loewen, the Alberta minister of forestry and parks, provides an update on the wildfire situation in the province. He is joined by Josee St-Onge, an information officer at Wildfire Alberta.
YourAlberta (Government of Alberta) published April 29, 2024: Highlighting wildfire preparedness in Alberta. Minister of Forestry and Parks Todd Loewen announced Budget 2024 funding to enhance Alberta’s wildfire preparedness, prevention and response efforts.

Rebel News, Canada local
written by Roberto Wakerell-Cruz
Thursday April 25, 2024

All of the 63 wildfires burning in Alberta's forest right now are human-caused, Todd Loewen, minister for forestry and parks, said on Wednesday.

Loewen's comment came during Wednesday's weekly Alberta wildfire update, where he urged citizens living in forested areas to obey all local fire bans and restrictions.

More than 170 wildfires have been put out across the province so far this year.

Currently, 63 wildfires are burning the province's forest protection area, with seven mutual aid fires. A mutual aid wildfire is a wildfire outside of the Forest Protection Area of Alberta in which Alberta Wildfire assists the lead agency.

This wildfire is classified as out of control at approximately 1500 hectares, the Alberta government reports.

"I urge you to assess your property for wildfire danger and take any preventive action you can to address these risks," Loewen said. "This includes breaking up fuel sources that could ignite a structure, removing trees in close proximity to your home, and properly maintaining your gutters and roofs to rid the materials that could easily ignite such as leaves and dry needles."

Loewen added that community members should be aware of fire bans in the area.

"These preventative measures play a crucial role in reducing human-caused wildfires when risk levels are high," he said.

"We expect that almost all of the wildfires we've experienced so far this year are human-caused, given the point we're at in the season and the types of weather we're seeing."

According to Josee St-Onge, an information officer with Alberta Wildfire, many regions of the province are expecting cool, wet weather. However, she cautioned that this might not be sufficient to alleviate the fire risk.

"We need significant and continued rain to overcome the drought conditions that we are experiencing across many parts of the province," she said.

"Snow has melted and exposed dead and dry vegetation which is extremely flammable for wildfire. Until vegetation green-up happens, wildfires will easily ignite and can spread very quickly."

Last year, the UCP government had to hire out-of-province arson investigators due to the uncharacteristically destructive wildfire season.

It was suspected that arson, not purported climate change, was to blame for a number of the large fires.

Throughout the 2023 wildfire season, 1,094 fires burnt a record 2.2 million hectares. The five-year average is 1,110 wildfires, though 2023 saw 10 times the amount of land burned.

CBC.ca, Canada local
written by Staff
Saturday April 27, 2024

Wildfire season is well underway in Alberta, with some communities already being forced to evacuate and provincial government officials implementing fire restrictions.

Last year marked a record wildfire year, burning more than 2.2 million hectares in Alberta. But drought helped several dozen fires survive throughout the winter and has left various regions drier than a year ago, resulting in an early wildfire season.

The Alberta government introduced fire restrictions for forest protection areas on April 24, as drought conditions bring extreme wildfire risk. Emergency management officials urged people to be cautious in the weeks ahead.

This article contains information and publicly available resources so people can prepare in advance for wildfires and stay updated about potential hazards in their community.

Tracking wildfires

Alberta Wildfire tracks all the wildfires burning in the province. It also keeps tabs on where fire bans, restrictions and advisories are in effect.

All wildfires that have occurred so far in 2024 can be found on the Alberta Wildfire interactive map. The map is part of the agency's status dashboard, which contains various statistics, such as the number of active fires and in what forest areas — Alberta has 10 of them — are affected.

The agency also updates a list of particularly serious fires — called wildfires of note — that are of public interest or could threaten people, communities, or important infrastructure. Fire information on that list is updated daily. The list can also be found on the Alberta Wildfire dashboard.

People can stay up to date by following Alberta Wildfire on Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), Instagram and YouTube.

Albertans can also use the Alberta Wildfire Status mobile app

People can also visit Alberta 511 to view highway conditions, including potential closures.

Wildfire starters

Alberta Wildfire investigates how fires are caused, breaking it down into two categories: human activity or lightning strikes.

About 60 per cent of the 1,088 wildfires that burned in Alberta last year were started by humans, provincial data shows. About one-third were caused by lightning.

But the lightning-caused fires did the most damage last year, burning about 1.75 million hectares — about 80 per cent of the total burned area.

Alberta Wildfire operates a lightning detection system that allows officials to track the wave of electricity and differentiate between bolts that land on the ground. Aerial patrols can then use the location data to check on certain points for fires.

Human-caused fires could include things like campfires and recreational activity, agricultural operations, industrial activity and arson.

Fire bans, restrictions and advisories

The Alberta government has a map, showing what communities and regions have active fire advisories, restrictions and bans.

Alberta Parks also lists such prohibitions within provincial parks and campgrounds.

The provincial government explains how each distinction differs:
  • Fire advisory: A signal that fire danger has increased. Fire permits may be restricted or suspended, but safe wood campfires and charcoal briquette barbecue fires are allowed.
  • Fire restriction: Prohibits wood campfires on public land, but allows them inside provincial campgrounds and private property. Charcoal barbecue fires are also allowed. Fire permits may be restricted, suspended or cancelled, but no new permits would be issued.
  • Fire ban: Prohibits wood campfires — on any type of property — and charcoal barbecue fires. Any existing fire permits will be suspended or cancelled, and no new permits will be issued.
Restrictions on off-highway vehicles, such as ATVs, and forest closures could also be issued.

People could be penalized for violating fire prohibitions, according to the provincial government's website. Someone who burns without a permit could be fined $360. People who knowingly contravene the Forest and Prairie Protection Act by starting a wildfire can be prosecuted in the courts and can be fined up to $100,000 or imprisoned for up to two years.

Prevention and preparation

Alberta's FireSmart program teaches people how to mitigate the risks and how fires could affect their communities and local infrastructure.

The program helps people plan at three different stages, helping residents, government officials and industry learn how to manage the landscape around homes and properties to prevent fires from causing damage.

The provincial government suggests people should be prepared to care of themselves for at least three days, such as storing important documents — IDs and banking information, for example — in a safe place above ground and maintaining an emergency kit.

An emergency kit should have non-perishable snacks, like granola bars and trail mix, and at least 72 hours worth of water and electrolytes — four litres of liquid per person, per day. It should have medical supplies, like bandages and antiseptic wipes, and medications — over-the-counter and prescription.

A copy of all personal documents, including IDs, social insurance numbers and citizenship papers, should be stored in the kit in a protective, sealable bag.

If possible, people should pack enough cash to cover up to three days' worth of expenses. They should pack a multi-tool, a battery-powered crank radio and flashlight, extra blankets, electronics with a vehicle charger and some small things to amuse themselves — books and portable toys and games.

The provincial government suggests people check on their supplies to make sure nothing is expired, batteries are charged and documents and credit cards are updated.

Alberta Wildfire tracks fire danger, how fires are behaving and how weather is affecting potential risk.

Anyone who sees a wildfire should report it to Alberta Wildfire by calling 310-3473.


When a wildfire is nearby, the Alberta government urges people to listen for updates from local authorities and be prepared to evacuate quickly.

There are two types of evacuation advisories:
  • Evacuation alerts: warn the public of a potential or current threat. If an alert is issued, people should prepare to evacuate because an evacuation order could be coming.
  • Evacuation orders: issued when the public must evacuate the area for their safety.
People can stay up to date about emergencies through Alberta Emergency Alert.

The Alberta Emergency Management Agency tracks alerts and places them on a map. Yellow icons mark advisories, encouraging people to take action. Red icons are critical and people need to take immediate action.

No comments: