"Of course," Elizabeth May said when asked if there was anything about the Fort McMurray wildfire that is linked to global warming. "The temperature records were being smashed through last month for northern Alberta," she said, while noting that no single event is caused by climate change alone. "It's due to global emissions."
"Scientists will say we know with a destabilized climate, with a higher average global temperature, we will see more frequent, more extreme weather events ... due to an erratic climate, due to our addiction to fossil fuels."
May later issued a statement to clarify her position.
“The devastating wildfires in Fort McMurray that continue to rage today are heartbreaking. My thoughts and prayers are with the people of Fort McMurray, those who have lost homes and businesses, and first responders who continue to fight to extinguish the blaze," she said. “Some reports have suggested that the wildfires are directly caused by climate change. No credible climate scientist would make this claim, and neither do I make this claim. Rather, we must turn our minds in the coming days to the impact of increased extreme climate events, and what we can do collectively to respond to these events."
Climate change scientists have predicted that the planet will continue to experience an increase in extreme weather events because of a rising concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels.
The Trudeau government was advised when it was sworn in last November that wildfires were getting worse. The bureaucrats at Natural Resources Canada told their new minister, Jim Carr, that governments across the country hadn't provided enough funding to help communities prepare for the worst.
View May 6, 2016 Toronto Star article
View May 4, 2016 Elizabeth May article
View May 4, 2016 CBC News article
View May 4, 2016 Maclean's article
View May 4, 2016 The Georgia Straight article
View May 4, 2016 Canoe.com blog post