Canada should be on “high alert” for 2024 wildfires, a scientist with the Canadian Forest Service said Friday, as he offered a sweeping view of last year’s record-shattering season. Research scientist Piyush Jain stopped short of giving a prediction for the upcoming season during Friday’s briefing. But he presented a number of charts showing certain indicators, such as drought conditions and soil moisture, look similar to around this time last year. He also pointed to temperature forecasts that predict a hotter than normal start to the wildfire season. Jain spent Friday’s briefing going through a far-reaching and data-centric retrospective of the 2023 wildfire season. More people were evacuated and more area was burned last year than during any other Canadian wildfire season on record. Widespread drought conditions, early snowmelt and lower than usual precipitation were some of the drivers of last year’s record-breaking season, he said.