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Canada Wildfires Forcing Thousands to Flee Their Homes

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Canada Wildfires Forcing Thousands to Flee Their Homes

Canada Wildfires that have been raging throughout the country for the past week have forced thousands of people to abandon their homes, with many unsure when they will be able to return.

Firefighters battling more than 100 wildfires across Canada may receive brief relief in some areas as a major mid-week storm moves through western and central Canada, bringing higher possibilities of rain and blasts of cool air.

Nonetheless, some dangerous fires are burning within miles of neighborhoods. Fire authorities warn that minor changes in weather or wind direction can suddenly put adjacent homes and businesses at jeopardy.

More than 6,000 people have fled Fort McMurray, Alberta, since Tuesday, as a 51,000-acre fire rages less than 5 miles from the city’s edge. Residents should count on being gone from their houses until at least May 21, and possibly longer, according to the regional municipality.

The fire near Fort McMurray remained active Wednesday, but winds were forecast to start pushing it away from the city and its key roadway, according to Alberta Wildfire Information Officer Josee St-Onge. Rain showers are expected to start Wednesday night and last until tomorrow, with a total rainfall of up to one inch.

Canada Wildfires Forcing Thousands to Flee Their Homes

Canada Wildfires Forcing Thousands to Flee Their Homes: CBC Image

Firefighters braving the flames of the wildfires

Firefighters have been working around the clock to keep the flames at bay, employing water helicopters with night vision. Firefighters, often defending their own villages, have also worked arduous and risky shifts.

“To the firefighters braving the flames to defend Fort McMurray and other areas of the province, we appreciate your heroic efforts more than we can say and we pray for your safe return,” the premier of Alberta, Danielle Smith, said on Wednesday.

For many Fort McMurray locals, the smoke-blackened skies and nervous evacuations bring back sad memories of “The Beast,” a devastating 2016 fire that forced 90,000 people to evacuate and caused billions of dollars in damage to homes and businesses.

Resident Jocelyn Routhier, whose neighborhood has yet to be told to evacuate, has observed from her back porch as the situation becomes disturbingly identical to the last disaster. She posted two uncanny photos of the fires, shot eight years apart.

“This is a déjà vu that I would prefer avoid. Let’s hope it doesn’t become a reality,” Routhier wrote in a social media post accompanying the photographs.

Jocelyn Routhier, a Fort McMurray homeowner, captured the 2016 and May 2024 flames from the same position on her porch.

Every day, new fires break out across Canada, and numerous out-of-control blazes threaten densely populated areas, leading scores of evacuated citizens to seek refuge in hotels, emergency shelters, and camp and RV sites.

Cooler temps, rain helping fend off wildfires

Cooler temps, rain helping fend off wildfires: Image Global News

Anticipated Rains

Mackenzie Spenrath is one of roughly 5,000 individuals forced to evacuate the Fort Nelson area of British Columbia, where the 31,000-acre Parker Lake Fire is blazing barely 1.5 miles from the town. He told CNN that he has grown obsessed with watching news and surfing through social media, “trying to figure out if my town is still standing.”

Fort Nelson fire crews may benefit from less than an inch of rain anticipated Wednesday night and Thursday evening. However, the quantity of precipitation required to offset drought conditions and extinguish the fires is significantly greater, according to the British Columbia Wildfire Service.

“It’s not completely hopeless, obviously. But the fire is so close to town that it’s difficult to imagine anything but the worst,” Spenrath explained.

Extremely dry conditions are also causing issues for firefighters battling a fire that has reached within a mile of the Cranberry Portage town in western Manitoba. Approximately 580 individuals have been evacuated, and there is no anticipated time for their return.

“Because the conditions are so extremely dry up there, the fires burned down deep,” Earl Simmons, the Manitoba Wildfire Service’s director, told CBC. “So the firefighters have to get in there and dig down into the dirt to extinguish it. And we’re not just talking a few inches; in some cases, we’re talking meters deep.

Warming circumstances induced by human-made climate change exacerbate the dry conditions that are fueling Canada’s wildfires.

“This region has experienced multiple years of drought, with a below-normal snowpack this past winter,” said Ben Boghean, fire behavior specialist for the BC Wildfire Service. “As a result of this, our forests in the Fort Nelson zone are very receptive to new fire ignitions and rapid rates of spread.”

Declining snow, rising temperatures, and worsening droughts are all signs of climate change, and Environment Canada predicts that they will continue to drive larger and more destructive fires across Canada.

Geoff Thomas is a seasoned staff writer at VORNews, a reputable online publication. With his sharp writing skills and deep understanding of SEO, he consistently delivers high-quality, engaging content that resonates with readers. Thomas' articles are well-researched, informative, and written in a clear, concise style that keeps audiences hooked. His ability to craft compelling narratives while seamlessly incorporating relevant keywords has made him a valuable asset to the VORNews team.

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Pregnant Hailey Bieber Shows Off Her Baby Bump In Glam Gothic Attire — See Her Look!

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Hailey Bieber | People Image

Hailey Bieber is channeling her darker side.

On Saturday, June 22, the 27-year-old model, presently pregnant with her first child, published an Instagram Story of herself wearing a black lace gown.

Bieber posed in a black lace bodysuit, emphasizing her baby bump. She paired the outfit with black sunglasses and a small black pocketbook and wore her hair in a sloppy bun.

bieber

Hailey Bieber | People Image

Pregnant Hailey Bieber Shows Off Her Baby Bump In Glam Gothic Attire

When spotted on the streets of New York City, the Rhode founder was wearing a black leather jacket over his gothic outfit.

Hailey and Justin Bieber announced their first pregnancy in May with a romantic Instagram post in which Hailey held a bouquet and showed off her expanding baby bump.

Justin’s mother, Pattie Mallette, expressed excitement in an Instagram Reel following their news.

“I’ve been waiting for this day. And now that they’ve announced it, I can finally celebrate with you all, and oh my word, I’m going to be a grandmother,” she added in the video.

bieber

Hailey Bieber | People Image

Pregnant Hailey Bieber Shows Off Her Baby Bump In Glam Gothic Attire

Shortly after, Hailey’s uncle, Billy Baldwin, spoke exclusively with PEOPLE about his growing family. “I really feel like there’s no higher calling than that responsibility,” he said of Hailey and Justin, 30, who are becoming parents.

The couple married in a small courtroom ceremony in September 2018 before exchanging vows in a grander ceremony in South Carolina the following year.

Throughout Hailey’s pregnancy, she has boldly shown her baby bump.

Earlier this month, the pregnant woman took a mirror selfie dressed in baggy black slacks and a slightly cropped striped blouse. She accessorized the look with a black leather shoulder bag, matching sunglasses, and one of Rhode’s viral phone cases.

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Hailey Bieber | Teen Vogue Image

Pregnant Hailey Bieber Shows Off Her Baby Bump In Glam Gothic Attire

Before that, she published photographs from her latest campaign with Yves Saint Laurent, revealing that she had been carrying her child for months when she photographed for the brand.

“Shot this 4 months preggy with a little bean in my belly,” she posted on Instagram Stories, alongside a photo of the ad.

SOURCE – (People )

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Canada Day Parade Cancelled in Montreal Due to Bureaucracy and Politics

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Canada Day Parade Cancelled in Montreal

The organizer of Montreal’s Canada Day parade has cancelled this year’s event, blaming bureaucratic red tape and politics. Nick Cowen the main Organizer of the Montreal Canada Day Parade issued a press release stating that he has had increasing difficulty in obtaining permissions and funds, as well as approval from government officials.

“Despite honoring all conditions set forth, Cowen said in his press release that he had been met with rules that change at the last minute and requests that make putting on the parade virtually impossible, An event that is meant to inspire unity has been thwarted because of division.”

Cowen claimed that in 2023, he was compelled to fill out the same documentation many times and completely restructure the event to satisfy Montreal city regulators. He also stated that he was directed to find 148 volunteers at the last minute, in order to ensure that at least one person stood by the procession cars’ tires.

“Imagine you are in traffic and need four people, one at each tire, to make sure no one runs under the wheel of a normal car,” he stated in an email.

Government Bureaucracy

He added that the federal government “requested that parts of the parade be removed entirely,” including the cake to be presented at the end of the march. “The parade’s budget was also reduced to 2013 levels in another devastating blow to this cherished event,” the author said.

The city of Montreal and the federal heritage agency did not respond to a request for comment on Sunday.

The parade has taken place since the late 1970s, however it was canceled between 2020 and 2022 due of the COVID-19 epidemic.

The news comes as organizers in some communities have rethought their celebrations in recent years due to rising security and insurance costs, as well as funding issues.

Cowen told The Canadian Press that, while COVID-19 contributed to the event’s cancellation, he was also trying to meet mounting costs as federal financing failed to keep up with inflation.

Other Canada Day celebrations will take place in Montreal on July 1, including the customary Old Port celebration with games, face painting, cupcakes, and music.

Canada Day in Montreal

In Montreal, Canada Day is a vibrant celebration that oozes enthusiasm and pride throughout the city. People dress in their finest patriotic garb, and the streets are filled with red and white.

Typically, the day begins with a massive parade through the city center, complete with colorful floats, marching bands, and cultural performers. Local parks are wonderful picnic spots since they host family-friendly activities such as face painting, games, and live music.

Streetside food trucks bordering the avenues serve a variety of Canadian foods, including poutine and maple sugar. Fireworks over the Old Port brighten the sky as the sun sets, creating a fantastic atmosphere.

Concerts and other activities continue throughout the evening, emphasizing local talent and fostering a sense of community. It’s a day of celebration, togetherness, and deep appreciation for Canada’s rich history.

Both locals and foreigners should attend this event because of Montreal’s unique fusion of French and English cultures, which adds a unique flavor to the celebrations.

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NATO Secretary-General Urges Trudeau to Honour Canada’s Spending Target

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NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg Canada
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg: AP Image

Canada needs to meet NATO’s minimum defence spending target, and present a plan on how it will reach it as a way to show authoritarian regimes that Western allies are aligned, NATO alliance’s secretary general has said.

Numbers NATO released this week show Canada is expected to spend 1.37 per cent of its gross domestic product on defence this year, well below the two per cent target.

“Canada’s standing in NATO is strong, but at the same time of course we expect all allies to make good on the promise of investing two per cent,” Jens Stoltenberg, secretary general of NATO, said during an event hosted by the NATO Association of Canada in Ottawa.

Ahead of Stoltenberg’s remarks, Defence Minister Bill Blair promised the goal will eventually be reached, as Russia’s war in Ukraine raises a threat of expanded conflict in Europe.

Last year, members agreed that two per cent should be a minimum, a reflection of worries over Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

Stoltenberg acknowledged it’s tough for politicians to prioritize defence over social services, but said a precondition of success in any Western country is preserving peace and investing in security.

Canada faces the same challenges as all the allied countries that have budgets, he said.

“They’re concerned about the fiscal balance. They want to spend money on health, education and on the other things,” he said.

But at the end of the day, if those countries aren’t able to prevent war, their efforts on health, education and climate change “will fail” he said.

NATO Association of Canada

His remarks on spending received enthusiastic applause from the NATO Association of Canada, including from former defence minister Anita Anand, who snuck in the back to listen to his remarks.

A handful of protesters gathered outside a building in the parliamentary precinct where Stoltenberg spoke.

On the sidewalk in front of the building, “Canada lagging behind our NATO allies” was written in chalk, along with “Trudeau and Blair laughing stocks of the world” and “Canadians are not laughing.”

Stoltenberg’s visit came the same day Russia and North Korea signed an agreement that pledges mutual aid if either country faces “aggression.”

Stoltenberg expressed concern that Russia could be providing support to North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs, and over China “propping up Russia’s war economy” by providing electronics that are being used in weapons and combat against Ukraine.

“So the answer is that when they are more and more aligned, all the authoritarian regimes like North Korea, China, Iran and Russia, then it’s even more important that we are aligned as countries believing in freedom and democracy,” he said.

Defence Spending

Defence spending across European allies and Canada was up nearly 18 per cent this year alone, Stoltenberg said during a speech at the White House on Monday — the biggest increase in decades.

Blair has said Canada’s defence spending will climb to at least 1.75 per cent of its GDP by 2029.

Additional spending on a new submarine fleet and integrated air defence and missile systems will probably push the figure past the two per cent mark, Blair said.

“Let me assure you that we’ve been doing a great deal of work within our Defence Department, with the government of Canada, but also with our NATO allies,” Blair said.

Allies were “very encouraged” by a defence policy update Canada released earlier this year, he said.

Defence spending will be among a number of topics Stoltenberg said he would raise with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who he had dinner with on Wednesday.

Defence spending delayed

The secretary general embraced Trudeau and Ottawa warmly, calling Canada like “home” and the prime minister “friend.” Stoltenberg also wants Canada to scale up its contribution in the North and maritime operations.

Both Blair and Anand, now treasury board president, acknowledged this week that defence spending is delayed because of a shortage of procurement workers. “We have the ability to accelerate spending. It does require an investment in people to get the job done,” Blair said.

The Liberal government has set aside $1.8 billion over 20 years to increase the number of workers who can purchase new equipment, recruit, train new soldiers and upgrade infrastructure.

NATO leaders are set to meet in Washington, D.C., next month for an annual summit and mark the alliance’s 75th anniversary.

Increasing funding for Ukraine will be an agenda priority, after Stoltenberg came forward with a proposal for all NATO allies to contribute 40 billion euros a year, Blair said.

At the White House on Monday, Stoltenberg said his expectation for next month’s meeting is to have allies agree “to step up financial and military support to Ukraine,” and reduce the burden on the U.S.

Source: The Canadian Press

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