The number of wildfires continues to rise in Canada, where last Friday authorities counted almost 700 fires, of which more than 380 were out of control; a situation that has nothing to do with the usual, as the “long and difficult summer’ for the North American country.

“These numbers are literally out of the ordinary, with at least three months left in the current wildfire season,” said Michael Norton of the Canadian Ministry of Natural Resources.

And weather forecasts for the coming weeks call for higher-than-usual temperatures for the season in various parts of the country, in the west and in northern Quebec, the region currently being hit hardest by the flames.

With 90 million hectares already charred – eleven times the average for the past decade – the previous annual absolute record, set in 1989, has long since been shattered.

In total, 677 fires were active yesterday (13 detected during the day), of which 386 were classified as out of control. Some 155,000 people have so far been forced to leave their homes for some time because of the fires since the start of the season in early May.

(And) this number is the highest in forty years.

According to Mr Norton, “it is no exaggeration to say that the 2023 fire season is and will continue to be a record breaker”: fires are forecast to continue throughout the summer.

Both sides of the country are burning at the same time, while areas completely unusual in such disasters are affected. Just one of the forest fires, in northern Quebec, charred ten million acres.

“Evacuations, poor air quality, extreme heat warnings: we are discovering the full reality of the consequences of climate change,” commented Health Minister Jean-Yves Diclos.

The situation has forced authorities to appeal for an unprecedented level of international aid to support the 3,800 Canadian firefighters on the ground, who are supported by the armed forces.

“The fight against wildfires has become a truly global effort,” according to Mr. Norton. More than 3,000 foreign firefighters (from New Zealand, from Chile, from Costa Rica, from Mexico, from Spain, from South Korea…) are fighting on the front lines of the huge fires, which are feared to be uncontrollable than months ago.