Wildfire Smoke Forecasts for Western Canada

The animation provides an hour-by-hour forecast of smoke from wildfires in Western Canada up to 48 hours in the future. Different exposure levels of smoke are provided in colours that correspond to different concentrations of PM2.5 at ground-level. The forecast is updated every morning and afternoon. Use the drop-down list below to change the time zone for the forecast. Wildfire smoke forecasts for Eastern Canada are available at www.bcairquality.ca/bluesky/east/.

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Disclaimer: the output is considered experimental as the forecast is produced by a system that is an ongoing research project and subject to uncertainties in weather forecasts, smoke dispersion and fire emissions.

For example, the system uses satellite detections to locate fires. If there is cloud cover or smoke that obscures their detection from space, the resulting smoke from these fires will not be accounted for in the forecast.

For users with the Google Earth desktop client, the smoke forecast is also available via Google Earth for:

Note: file size changes daily depending upon the level of fire activity.

See Viewing the Western Canada BlueSky Wildfire Smoke Forecasts in Google Earth (PDF: 238 KB/1 page) for instructions on using the KMZ files in Google Earth.

Download Google Earth.

These smoke forecasts are produced by the Western Canada BlueSky Smoke Forecasting System operating at the University of British Columbia. For more detailed information about the system, see The BlueSky Western Canada Wildfire Smoke Forecasting System (PDF: 250 KB/6 pages). The system was developed through the collaborative efforts of the following partners: B.C. Ministry of Environment, B.C. Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, Alberta Department of Environment and Sustainable Resource Development, Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment, Manitoba Health, Natural Resources Canada, Environment Canada, Parks Canada, University of British Columbia and the United States Forest Service. In addition to the above partners, this work is supported by the Canadian Safety and Security Program (CSSP-2012-CP-1182) which is managed by Defence Research and Development Canada's Centre for Security Science.

Government of British Columbia University of British Columbia United States Forest Service Government of Alberta
Natural Resources Canada Environment Canada
Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment Manitoba Health Government of Canada Canadian Safety and Security Program

Comments on the output, or questions about the system and forecasts should be directed to: bcairquality@gov.bc.ca.