Chapais, a small community located in the northern region of Quebec near Chibougamau, has been voluntarily evacuated due to raging wildfires in the north.
Isabelle Lessard, the 23-year-old mayor of the town, has faced her first major challenge.
"Our evacuations were voluntary, and we recommended citizens, especially those with fragile health, to head towards Lac-St-Jean, where there would be a maximum of services," she mentioned to Rebel News. "Although I'm not an expert in the field of climate change, I have observed some notable changes in our region."
Politicians have swiftly condemned these fires as a consequence of climate change. SOPFEU, the forest fire protection agency, reiterated that a direct link to climate change cannot be established since there are multiple causes at play.
On-site, certain residents shared their thoughts on the probable causes.
"Wildfires have existed for thousands of years; the Earth needs them for renewal, for the animals and everything," mentioned a member of the Chapais community.
When I asked someone if they believed it was criminal, they responded, "Yeah, I think so because when you look at the satellites, everything lights up at the same time. It's not normal."
"It could be lightning, it could be human error. It's hard to say," mentioned a resident who was passing by on their bicycle.
Most people on the ground agreed that this year has been drier than the previous one.
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