Mass Evacuations as Wildfires Rage in Tenerife and Canada’s Northwest Territories

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Wildfires continue to wreak havoc in both Tenerife, Spain, and Canada’s Northwest Territories, leading to the displacement of tens of thousands of residents. In Tenerife, approximately 26,000 people are being relocated to safety as a massive forest fire engulfs the region. The inferno has been exacerbated by strong winds and elevated temperatures, while the rugged landscape and thick smoke are impeding firefighting efforts. Despite the challenges, firefighters have identified the fire’s active areas and are strategizing containment measures.

The Spanish island’s dry conditions, stemming from years of drought, have contributed to the wildfire’s intensity. Tenerife, like mainland Spain, has experienced below-average rainfall due to changing climate patterns influenced by global climate change. European Union authorities attribute the escalating frequency and severity of wildfires in Europe to climate change, with 2022 ranking as the second-worst year for wildfire devastation, following the record set in 2017.

Meanwhile, Canada’s Northwest Territories are grappling with their own wildfire crisis. Over 19,000 individuals in Yellowknife have been evacuated, which equates to the city’s entire population. Evacuation efforts included 15,000 people departing via road and 3,800 being airlifted, with more than 300 firefighters mobilized to combat the flames. The Northwest Territories are contending with over 200 wildfires that have compelled additional residents to seek refuge in evacuation centers across Alberta, extending as far south as Calgary.

In Tenerife, firefighters have rallied to manage the blaze, deploying 265 personnel and 19 aircraft, with additional reinforcements en route from the mainland. The fire’s challenging location on steep, wooded terrain further complicates containment endeavors. Despite the extensive destruction, no injuries have been reported since the fire’s inception last Tuesday. In Canada, emergency responders are striving to gain control over the numerous blazes through a concerted firefighting effort and comprehensive evacuation strategies.

SOURCE: Ref Image from Gulf Today

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