Smoke from forest fires in Northern Ontario and in Quebec contribute to pink hazy sunset in the city from the Cherry Beach over Toronto on June 6. | ALL IMAGES: GETTY IMAGES

THE EFFECTS of nearly 250 wildfires in Ontario and Quebec have made their way into the northeastern United States, bringing apocalyptic skies.

A haze of smoke is currently choking New York City and Washington D.C, with nearly 100 million people experiencing very poor air quality in North America. In fact, data from the US Environmental Protection Agency’s Air Quality Index (AQI) shows that cities in North-Eastern America had the worst air quality in the world on Thursday morning. Many commuters are choosing to wear face masks as they move around the city, transforming the streets of New York into an eerily familiar, pandemic-era scene.

The cloudy plume — darkening skylines and painting them a dark hazy orange — has obscured visibility, and as a result flights have been grounded and numerous events cancelled. While Australians are no strangers to smoky skies — during the bushfires of the summer of 2019-2020, Australia’s East Coast was cloaked in smog for months — for those living on America’s Eastern Seaboard, where summers are humid and rain is plentiful, the sight is totally unfamiliar.

US President Joe Biden described the fires as a “stark reminder of the impacts of climate change”.

See the surreal photographs below.

A plane is seen crossing in front of the sun’s silhouette as wildfires in eastern Canada blows haze over New York City, United States and creates redder sunset on May 31, 2023.
A view of Toronto’s skyline, featuring the CN Tower, on June 6.

An empty paddock belonging to BJ Fuchs, a farmer who has lost some land and had to move his cattle due to the wildifires, is seen filled with smoke and fog in Shining Bank, Alberta, Canada, on May 11

BJ Fuchs, a farmer who has lost some land and had to move his cattle due to the wildifires, stands for a photo in Shining Bank, Alberta, Canada, on May 11. Many ranchers stayed behind to care for livestock as neighbours fled wildfires that ravaged Canada’s Alberta province this week, others tearfully telling AFP all they could do was open corral gates and hope their abandoned cows found their own way to safety.

The scene above the Yankees-White Sox game at Yankee Stadium on June 6.

Smoky skies extended to Washington D.C., as seen here above The White House.

A look at the Statue of Liberty in New York City on June 6 as smoke fills the sky.

Images from this article originally appeared in Esquire US.