Air quality alert extended into Friday

As the Canadian wildfires in Manitoba and Ontario continue to burn, another air quality alert has been issued for much of western and north-central Minnesota.

The alert, in effect from 10 a.m. today until Friday at 9 p.m., includes the Bemidji area, as well as the tribal nations of Leech Lake and Red Lake.

The areas in which these wildfires are burning are unpopulated and difficult to access, and will likely continue to burn until there is significant precipitation.

Southern Canada is experiencing much of the same drought conditions there are in Minnesota and across the western half of the country.

Fine particles from the smoke will move into northern Minnesota behind a cold front and are expected to be in the unhealthy-for-all red AQI category across far northern Minnesota and the Red Lake Nation.

The unhealthy-for-some orange category is expected in the rest of the affected area, including Bemidji and the Leech Lake Nation.

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