With floods, storms, and wildfires dominating the headlines, it is no secret that climate threats are increasing. According to research from CDP, a nonprofit organization that promotes climate disclosure, 4 out of 5 cities have faced major climate dangers this year. By 2025, a quarter of the cities surveyed anticipate increasingly frequent “high-risk” climate threats.
For their Protecting People and the Planetanalysis, researchers surveyed 998 localities, and they discovered that 80% of those cities reported facing severe climate hazards in 2022, such as excessive heat (46%), heavy rainfall (36%), drought (35%) and flooding (33%) At least 70% of the populace in the cities in 28% of those with major climate hazards are at risk from these extreme weather occurrences.
The majority of respondents who currently experience substantial climate hazards also anticipate future disasters to be more severe or more frequent.
As stated in a statement by Maia Kutner, Interim Global Director of Cities, States, and Regions at CDP, “2022 has been another disastrous year for climate change disasters, from the deadliest floods in Pakistan’s history to the worst drought across the continent of Europe in five centuries.” We frequently hear cliches like “unprecedented,” “worst ever,” or “first time in history,” yet these words hardly capture the harrowing effects that the planet’s rising temperature is having on both the planet and its inhabitants.
Cities that responded to the survey highlighted that their own resources are also in danger, with water supply being seen as the most vulnerable, followed by agriculture and waste management.
While the report does highlight somber worries from cities around the world, it also shows how people-centered climate action in cities has resulted in a number of positive outcomes, including an increase in green space, better air, soil, and water quality, better physical and mental health for city residents, and increased food and water security.
According to Michael Bloomberg, the UN Secretary-Special General’s Envoy on Climate Ambition and Solutions, this report highlights the significant risks that cities across the globe face as a result of climate change as well as the advantages of taking action, such as improved public health, increased economic opportunity, and cleaner air.
Cities may advance more quickly the more residents they involve in their efforts to address the climate catastrophe and the more they are aware of the risks and advantages of doing so.
In response to the research, CDP is urging cities to create and carry out climate action plans that include science-based goals, a focus on and engagement with people, especially vulnerable populations, and collaboration with public and private sectors for funding.
First published on EcoWatch, the article 4 of 5 World Cities Faced “Significant Climate Hazards” in 2022.
Bighorn sheep and mountain goats compete with one another throughout 1,500 miles of the Rocky Mountains, according to scientists’ research. Resources that are being revealed when glaciers melt are the focus of the competition. A recently published study details these hitherto unreported skirmishes and demonstrates that the goats are typically victorious.
The study, which examined a 1,500-mile section of the American Rocky Mountains, was conducted by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), Colorado State University, and the National Park Service. The mammals fight for access to these resources when more minerals, such as salt licks and potassium deposits, are exposed as a result of glacier melting. Journal Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution published the work.
According to Joel Berger, the study’s lead author, senior scientist for WCS, and holder of the Barbara Cox-Anthony Chair of Wildlife Conservation at Colorado State University, species aggression among our mammalian relatives is still largely unknown, despite the fact that humans continue to cause justifiable concern about the destruction we are wreaking on the planet as a result of climate change.
Scientists were also aback to learn that goats outnumbered bighorn sheep in the confrontations. Over 98% of the confrontations were won by mountain goats at three different locations in Colorado, Alberta, and Canada.
Berger told the Washington Post, “We were shocked that the mountain goats won. I had the nave idea that these mountains are home to two species that are identical in size. And if everything were equal, we would anticipate one winner half the time and the other half.
Although they are endemic to the northwest of the United States, mountain goats are not native to Colorado or Wyoming. The observations raise questions about whether mountain goats will be able to compete with the local bighorn sheep.
Scientists believe that melting glaciers that expose resources are a contributing factor to the issue, but human activity such as the construction of highways and artificial water sources that limit access to natural supplies for the animals may also be a factor.
According to Berger in a statement, if we can’t give other species a chance, we’re merely paving the way for our own destruction.
The Rocky Mountains have lost over 300 glaciers in the last 100 years, according to The Guardian.
The majority of the glaciers in Glacier National Park will no longer be visible by 2030, according to NASA’s Earth Observatory. The species in these mountainous ecosystems may be further impacted by these continuous and quick changes brought on by global warming.
These locations were once blanketed with snow and ice. There is some contention over access now that they have opened up, Berger told The Guardian. None of these species seek direct war, but that is exactly what is taking place.
It’s common knowledge that air conditioning is bad for the environment, but is this true?
The amount of energy used for cooling is terrible for the environment, but the same could be said for driving or for central heating.
Like them, air conditioning is essential to human life, and how it is used determines how it affects the environment. New air conditioning systems often use less energy in the UK.
Is Climate Change Caused by Air Conditioning?
The overall statistical picture does not paint a positive image.
The US, which is the country that uses air conditioning the most, consumes 15% of all energy and emits 100 million tonnes of CO2 annually. To put that in perspective, more fossil fuel is used in the US for air conditioning than is used throughout the entire continent of Africa.
Furthermore, not all of it is used effectively. Waste heat from air conditioning is rising the nighttime temperature outside by up to 1°C in some places during the summer.
The problem is only getting worse on a global scale. Demand for air conditioning is soaring as the emerging world becomes more prosperous. In 2010, 50 million air conditioners were sold in China, and sales are rapidly increasing throughout Asia, the Middle East, and India.
The ozone layer and the world’s energy resources are both being severely strained by the rising need for cooling.
Why Is Office Air Conditioning Necessary?
This growth has cultural roots in part. It does, however, highlight how crucial office air conditioning is. When the office is between 20°C and 24°C, most people can work comfortably, but outside of this range, productivity suffers.
The need for air conditioning will only increase because almost all of the cities with the fastest population growth are located in hot climates.
Studies have repeatedly demonstrated how crucial temperature is to the workplace. According to a Japanese study, productivity declines by 2% for every degree above 25°C. 2 percent of working hours are wasted due to unfavorable temperatures, according to a recent UK survey by OnePoll and Andrews Sykes.
Businesses frequently have problems with overheated workers. Air conditioning is frequently a crucial purchase. It is incredibly difficult to strike a balance between individual and environmental requirements in hot areas. However, cooling demand is significantly lower in the UK, where air conditioning can be operated quite well.
Air Conditioning: How Effective Is It?
Not all air conditioning units are harmful to the environment. Manufacturers have been working very hard behind the scenes to cut the energy usage of their equipment, and new laws imply that ozone-depleting refrigerants will soon be history.
The most effective approach to heat and cool a large office or retail space is with a modern VRF or VRV system. Depending on what you already have in place and the size of the room, wall-mounted split systems may be more efficient than conventional heating.
Your building’s energy use and carbon footprint will almost likely be reduced if your air conditioning system is well-designed and maintained.
Is Climate Change a Result of Air Conditioning?
We promptly set up four air conditioners at our new Glasgow office. Why? Compared to the previous central heating, they are more efficient and use less energy. They save our energy costs and improve the atmosphere in our office.
For summer cooling, some people use inefficient fans and energy-guzzling portable air conditioners, but our A-rated system does the job perfectly and without any fuss.
Over half of the energy used in a typical building is used for heating, cooling, and ventilation. Choosing the most effective system for you makes sense. It won’t have a negative environmental impact if installing or remodeling an air conditioning system is involved.
Government statistics show that buildings are responsible for 43% of the UK’s carbon emissions. You can lower that by making your building as efficient as you can.
The UK government established the Enhanced Capital Allowance (ECA) Scheme as a financial incentive to increase building energy efficiency. Installing equipment that fulfills particular energy-saving criteria entitles businesses to tax credit.
These are compiled in the Energy Technology List and consist of HVAC systems and air conditioners. In the UK, using air conditioning is a well-known strategy to reduce energy usage.
Flights were halted on Monday at one of the biggest airports in the UK because a runway was damaged by the high temperatures. In certain areas of the nation, temperatures climbed to as high as 37 degrees Celsius (or 99 degrees Fahrenheit).
When the airport reopened on Monday evening, London Luton Airport tweeted about the incident and provided an update.
The airport posted on Twitter that “high surface temperatures forced a tiny section to lift,” necessitating an “important runway repair.”
Just after six o’clock, full activities were resumed in London.
After a report from Sky News stated that the runway had “melted,” the Royal Air Force (RAF) halted all flights to and from Brize Norton, its largest air base, in Oxfordshire. Luton Airport then made its announcement shortly after that.
On Monday afternoon, the UK Ministry of Defense published a message regarding flights at Brize Norton.
“The RAF’s top priority during this period of severe warmth is flight safety, so aircraft are utilizing alternative airfields in accordance with a long-established protocol. This indicates that RAF operations are unaffected “The declaration read.
Due to the heat, passengers are not encouraged to travel on Monday or Tuesday, unless they are making “necessary journeys,” according to Network Rail and Transport for London (TfL). To safeguard railway rails, train speed restrictions have also been implemented.
With temperatures expected to hit 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) in some areas of the nation on Monday and Tuesday, the UK’s Met Office issued its first-ever “red” warning for excessive heat on Friday.
The closure of Luton Airport is the most recent event in a stressful summer for travel in the UK, which has seen tens of thousands of flights canceled, lengthy security lines, and innumerable claims of missing or delayed baggage.
In an effort to manage the high demand and staffing shortages, Heathrow Airport this week urged airlines to halt selling tickets for travel this summer and established a 100,000 per day passenger cap until September 11.
As sweltering temperatures pushed north as Britain prepared for what may be the hottest day on record, firefighters fought fires in southern Europe.
Experts are blaming climate change and expecting more regular extreme weather, and expectations are now strong that on Tuesday the British record of 38.7C might be beaten and 40C could be crossed for the first time.
The Netherlands is also likely to have temperatures exceeding 35°C while neighboring Belgium is predicted to experience temperatures of 40°C or higher.
The national weather agency reported that a number of towns and cities in France experienced their highest-ever temperatures on Monday.
In Brest, on the Atlantic coast of Britany, in the far north-west of the nation, the temperature reached 39.3°C, breaking the previous record of 35.1°C from 2002.
Saint-Brieuc on the shore of the English Channel reached 39.5°C, breaking the previous record of 38.1°C, and Nantes in western France reached 42°C, breaking the previous mark of 40.3°C from 1949.
In the sweltering heat, firefighters in southwest France are still battling to put out two enormous fires that have left extensive damage.
Armies of firemen and a fleet of waterbombing planes have been battling fires for almost a week now, mobilizing much of France’s firefighting resources.
One of the 1,500 firemen battling the Gironde fire, which has been destroying 14,000 hectares of pine forest close to the Dune du Pilat, Europe’s highest sand dune and a popular summer tourist destination since Tuesday, stated, “It never stops.” I have been a firefighter for 30 years, and I have never seen a fire like this.
On Monday, a 5.5-mile long (9 km) by 5-mile broad region was still burning close to the dune, and the area’s expected high temperature was 44 C.
As a result of shifting winds that were blowing thick smoke into residential areas, 8,000 people were evacuated from the region close to the dune on Monday, according to officials.
After leaving his home close to the village of La Teste-de-Buch, 26-year-old Théo Dayan told Le Monde, “We’re climate change refugees.” “We’re not reaching out and touching global warming — it’s smacking us right in the face,” local fire chief Jean-Luc Gleyze said.
In France, 32,000 visitors or residents have been compelled to leave, many going to shelters for the homeless.
Thirteen départements, including Brittany, where the seaside city of Brest was expected to reach 40C on Monday—nearly double its annual average for July—have been put on the highest state of notice for excessive heat.
This is the second heatwave to hit regions of southwest Europe in recent weeks. Meanwhile, according to analysts with the European Commission, 46% of EU territory was under a drought warning.
Dublin, Ireland, saw temperatures of 33C, the highest since 1887, while Westdorpe, a city in the southern Netherlands, recorded temperatures of 35.4C. Although it wasn’t a record, Tuesday is predicted to be warmer there.
Thousands of hectares of land have been devastated by fires in France, Greece, Portugal, and Spain.
A guy who is thought to have set one of the fires in the area has been brought into prison, according to French prosecutors in the city of Bordeaux in the country’s southwest.
At least four people in Spain have died as a direct result of the recent high heat, and dozens of wildfires, many of which are still blazing, have scorched about 30,000 hectares (75,000 acres) of the nation.
A 69-year-old shepherd was killed by a fire in the northwest province of Zamora, according to local officials. In the same region, a fireman passed away on Sunday.
An office worker in his fifties died from heatstroke in Madrid, it was announced later on Monday.
From the south to Galicia in the extreme northwest, where blazes have scorched around 4,500 hectares (more than 11,000 acres) of land, authorities have recorded about 20 wildfires currently burning.
The prime minister of Spain, Pedro Sánchez, paid respect to Gullón Vara and stated that the events of the previous week provided additional evidence of the climate catastrophe while on a visit to the south-western area of Extremadura on Monday morning.
I want to be really clear about something, he said. “Climate change kills: it kills people, as we’ve seen; it kills our ecology, our biodiversity, and it also damages the things we as a society hold dear — our homes, our companies, and our animals.”
The flames in Portugal, a neighboring country where temperatures reached 47C last week, have been put out after consuming 12,000–15,000 hectares of land, killing two people, and wounding 60 others.
According to Mario Artur Lopez, the mayor of Murcia, “We found the automobile and these two persons, aged around 70 years, completely incinerated.” He claimed that the fatalities were from the nearby community of Penabeice.
The risk of flames remained extremely high despite the weekend’s reduction in temperatures, according to the Portuguese Institute of Meteorology (IPMA). Nine active wildfires were being fought by more than 1,000 firemen, 285 vehicles, and 14 aircraft, mostly in the northern areas of the country, according to officials.
Scientists claim that because of climate breakdown, the UK is no longer a cold country and that previously unthinkable heatwaves are killing people.
The Met Office has forecast for the first time that temperatures over 40C (104F) will occur this week, but climate projections indicate that similar weather occurrences will grow more frequently.
This involves modernizing the housing stock and making sure new construction can cool off in hot weather. The government should also develop a special heat risk plan.
The Grantham Institute at the LSE’s Bob Ward said: “The current prime minister has disregarded repeated recommendations to develop a national heat risk strategy that would involve all pertinent government ministries in addressing the growing threat from heatwaves.
He criticized critics and MPs who called people who are afraid of heatwaves “snowflakes.” The head of the Common Sense Group of Conservative MPs, Sir John Hayes, stated over the weekend that heat warnings were a sign of a “cowardly new world,” adding that it was not unexpected that snowflake Britain was melting. Thank goodness most of us are not freaks of nature.
In response, Ward stated: “In recent days, some have asserted in the UK media that the rising awareness of the risks associated with heatwaves is an indication of a deterioration in British resilience. But such indifference for hundreds of lives that may have been avoided just serves to emphasize the difficulties we confront in addressing the escalating hazards posed by climate change.
“The UK needs to stop seeing itself as just a frigid place where any summertime warmth is welcomed as a chance to visit the beach and indulge in ice cream. For at least the next 30 years, heat waves—a dangerous form of extreme weather—will only get worse. Particularly for those who are most vulnerable to heat waves, we must adapt and improve our self-defense.
Governments have been encouraged by scientists to act rapidly to phase out fossil fuels and achieve net zero emissions in order to prevent the situation from getting worse.
Climate change is to blame for this heatwave, as it is to blame for every heatwave right now, according to Dr. Friederike Otto, a senior lecturer in climate science at the Grantham Institute. Heatwaves are getting hotter, staying longer, and happening more frequently due to greenhouse gas emissions from burning fossil fuels like coal, gas, and oil.
Heatwaves that were once unusual are increasingly regular, and those that were once unthinkable are now occurring and claiming lives.
As long as greenhouse gas emissions are not reduced, heat waves will only get worse. Heatwaves will become more intense and hazardous as well as more frequent and persistent the longer it takes for the globe to achieve net zero emissions. Stopping the combustion of fossil fuels as soon as feasible is the only way to stop heat records from being broken repeatedly.
Climate researcher Dr. Eunice Lo from the University of Bristol Cabot Institute for the Environment stated: “The climate has warmed dramatically since 1976. The top 10 hottest years, for which we have records dating back to 1884, have all happened since 2002.
“Temperatures now occurring that were previously inconceivable. This is extraordinary; it has never happened before. 1976 cannot be compared because the previous record was shattered in 2019. In the coming days, there is a good potential that we may break this again. These are new extremes by definition.
Dismayed meteorologists reported the bad news about the intense heat. Dr. Nikos Christidis, a scientist at the Met Office who studies climate attribution, stated, “We hoped we wouldn’t get to this scenario, but for the first time ever we are projecting hotter than 40C in the UK.
The possibility of temperature extremes in the UK has already been impacted by climate change, he continued. In comparison to a naturally occurring climate undisturbed by human impact, the likelihood of 40°C days in the UK may be up to 10 times higher in the current climate.
Even with current pledges to reduce emissions, the likelihood that any location in the UK may experience temperatures above 40°C in a given year has been rising quickly. In the climate of 2100, such extremes may occur every 15 years.
It appears that this week’s risk of extremely high temperatures will continue. Prof. Hannah Cloke, a specialist in natural disasters at the University of Reading, stated: “From what I hear, we will hopefully see temperatures drop back down in a few days, but there is a chance of temperatures shooting back up in a week or two, which is quite alarming for the UK and Europe.
“There is a significant chance that there will be further heatwaves throughout the world for the remainder of the summer, and we will be monitoring that very carefully.”
According to a government report, the state of Australia’s environment is poor and has worsened over the past five years as a result of pressures from climate change, habitat loss, invasive species, pollution, and mining. The report warns that the natural world holds the key to human survival and well-being.
The state of the environment report, which scientists completed last year but which the Morrison government withheld until after the federal election, found that some Australian ecosystems had undergone abrupt changes over the previous five years, with at least 19 of them now exhibiting signs of collapse or being on the verge of collapse.
Despite efforts by the federal and state governments to address the decrease, the report found that there was insufficient financing for environmental protection and that there had been a lack of cooperation between the various government agencies to adequately manage the threat’s cumulative effect.
In a speech to the National Press Club on Tuesday, the environment and water minister Tanya Plibersek will release the five-year report. She called it a “shocking document” that told “a story of crisis and decline in Australia’s environment, and of a decade of government inaction and willful ignorance.”
She declared, “I won’t be burying my head in the sand.” The environment is now again a top focus under Labor.
According to the World Economic Forum, which was referenced in the report, environmental deterioration is increasingly seen as a threat to humanity and has the potential to “bring about social collapses with long-lasting and catastrophic effects.”
Important Points from The Environment Report
Following 175 species being added to the list between 2011 and 2016, 202 animal and plant species have been recognized as vulnerable items of national environmental interest since 2016. This has occurred even while the rate of new species discovery and description has significantly decreased during the previous ten years. More species still exist that are unknown than are known.
While 21 priority species’ trajectories have improved as a result of a government threatened species policy, many other species did not. As the effects of the devastating 2019–20 bushfires, which killed or displaced between 1 billion and 3 billion animals, became more apparent, the list would grow significantly in the following years.
In the developed world, Australia has one of the fastest rates of species decline and has lost more mammal species than any other continent. Australia has around 100 species that have been classified as extinct or extinct in the wild. Introduced species, habitat loss, and clearance of habitat were the main causes of extinction.
With an increase in the areas dedicated to forestry and crops, about half of the nation is currently used for grazing. Since 1990, more than 6.1 million hectares of prime native forest have been cleared—an area larger than suburban Melbourne. Nearly 290,000 hectares of primary forest and 343,000 hectares of regrown forest were cut in the five years leading up to 2019.
There are more exotic plant species in Australia than native ones. Over the past 50 years, hundreds of billions of dollars have been spent in an effort to control invasive species, illnesses, and introduced species.
Due to drought and water exploitation, the Murray-Darling Basin’s water levels reached record lows in 2019. Native fish populations have decreased by more than 90% over the previous 150 years, a trend that appears to be continuing, and rivers and catchments are generally in poor condition.
A Little Staghorn Coral on The Great Barrier Reef that Has Bleached
Ocean heat waves in 2016, 2017, and 2020 led to widespread coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef. (The report was completed before this year’s March major bleaching.) A critical point is rapidly approaching where ocean acidification, which is brought on by the uptake of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, will result in the demise of young coral.
Reefs all around the nation were in a bad and declining state, as were the animals that depend on them. Rising sea temperatures have sent sea urchin populations south, destroying kelp beds along the country’s southeast coast and endangering 150 reef species and rocky reef habitats.
In places close to metropolitan centers, waterways, beaches, and shorelines are typically in bad condition, whereas more distant areas tend to have better conditions. With 86 percent of populations being categorized as not being overfished, the larger marine ecosystem is generally in better form than the terrestrial environment.
Many low-lying places, notably the Kakadu wetlands, have been impacted by sea level rise. Mangroves are displacing saltmarshes along much of Australia’s coast.
Australia has the third-largest cumulative loss of soil organic carbon worldwide, behind China and the US, due to changes in land use, which has an impact on the climate issue.
Despite the objections of Traditional Owners, the destruction of Indigenous history continues at an unsustainable rate. Nearly half of the nation’s protected lands are owned by indigenous people, yet they have limited access to funding and other essential resources for managing their country.
Compared to other established cities worldwide, the majority of major Australian cities are expanding more quickly. Urban heat, traffic, pollution, and trash have all increased due to the rate of growth, and the demand for water and energy resources is also on the rise.
At least 19 Australian ecosystems are on the verge of or have already experienced collapse. Ecosystems across the continent, including those in Antarctica and the subantarctic, are collapsing. A sudden change is the disappearance of Tasmania’s enormous kelp forests.
Between 2000 and 2017, almost 93 percent of the vulnerable species’ terrestrial habitat was destroyed without being reported to the federal government for evaluation under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act.
Dr. Terri Janke, a well-known Indigenous lawyer, Dr. Ian Cresswell, an environmental scientist at CSIRO, and Prof. Emma Johnston, the deputy vice-chancellor for research at the University of Sydney, were the report’s primary writers.
They emphasized that the natural world—which provides food, water, air, and raw materials—is inextricably linked to the world of people.
“With dwindling biodiversity and a fast-changing climate, the situation for our ecosystem is generally getting worse. All of us will be impacted by this. Understanding, preserving, and restoring the health of our ecosystem is in our own best interests, they declared.
“We are also accountable for it. Beyond what we directly use it for, our environment has intrinsic value.
According to the report, improving the environment would call for national leadership, integrated management across federal, state, and territorial systems, new financing sources, and greater monitoring and reporting.
Plibersek stated to the ABC on Tuesday that the country’s environmental laws needed to be changed because they were ineffective and because the government had sufficient information on the severity of the issue. She claimed, “If we continue doing what we’re doing, we’ll keep receiving the same results.
The minister stated that she planned to build on the results of a statutory review by the former head of the competition watchdog, Graeme Samuel, and submit reforms to environmental laws, including the establishment of the Environment Protection Agency, to parliament next year.
According to Sarah Hanson-Young, the environment spokesman for the Green Party, the report demonstrated that “this is an emergency and in an emergency, you take emergency action.”
She claimed that it detailed a “litany of environmental wreckage fueled by climate change and years of denial and neglect” and that it was time to reform the law to take climate change into account when planning new fossil fuel developments.
If the minister is truly worried by this report, she will act right away to stop polluting projects that are causing the climate disaster and ensure that no more crucial habitat is destroyed, according to Hanson-Young.
Prof. Chennupati Jagadish, president of the Australian Academy of Science, said the study was depressing to read and that the situation for the environment was bleak, with many natural systems’ critical thresholds expected to be crossed if global warming persisted.
Jagadish urged for the establishment of an independent organization to monitor wildlife and biodiversity data, claiming that the report demonstrated “severe underinvestment” in the scientific knowledge and capabilities required to comprehend the state of the environment. In order to respond to the climate catastrophe more quickly, he suggested that Australia review its promises to reduce emissions.
Australia’s “total failure of environmental and conservation management” has been proven, according to Prof. Euan Ritchie of the Centre for Integrative Ecology at Deakin University, who called the research authoritative, long overdue, and authoritative.
But he said that it was still possible to alter the course. “We stand to earn huge social, cultural, economic, and environmental benefits if we act now and tighten and enforce environmental laws, offer substantially higher investment to promote the protection and recovery of the environment and threatened species, and better interact with people,” he said.
A representative for Sussan Ley, the deputy leader of the Liberal Party and former environment minister in the Morrison administration who received the report in December, justified the decision to withhold its release until after the election. He said that the Coalition had “implemented various policies which preserved Australia’s natural environment” and that the report had been handled within the prescribed legislative deadline.
Tanya Plibersek must follow Sussan Ley’s example of following the advice of professionals and scientists in protecting the environment, the spokesman said.
In the midst of a record-breaking heatwave that shows no signs of abating, massive wildfires spread through western Europe on Saturday, scorching vast swaths of land and displacing thousands of people from their homes.
Firefighters are trying to put out fires in portions of France, Spain, and Portugal as this week’s scorching summer temperatures are predicted to maintain favorable conditions for their growth.
Strong winds hindered efforts to stop a fire that raced across pine forests in the Gironde area of southwest France, forcing the evacuation of more than 12,000 residents.
Nearly 10,000 hectares (25,000 acres) of land have been destroyed by that fire and another one just south of Bordeaux, up from 7,300 on Friday.
As long as the fire is not put out, it will keep spreading, according to Vincent Ferrier, deputy prefect for Langon in Gironde.
One Gironde local who lives close to La Teste-de-Buch described the situation as “post-apocalyptic.”
She told the news agency AFP, “I’ve never seen this before.
Firefighters were tackling a number of flames in neighboring Spain as a result of days of extremely high temperatures that reached as high as 45.7C.
In the south of the nation, close to the Costa del Sol, a sizable wildfire in the town of Mijas forced more than 3,000 residents to leave their homes. Emergency services said that many people were taken to a sports complex for shelter.
“Everyone was told to leave as the cops drove up and down the street with their sirens blaring. Simply leave. No directions were given, according to 83-year-old British retiree John Pretty.
There are roughly 40 residences in our neighborhood, a Briton named Ashley Baker who resides in Mijas told the BBC. Everyone was watching it while standing outside or on balconies and was really tense.
Tourists in Torremolinos who were on the beach described towering smoke plumes rising in the hills where numerous planes were battling the wildfire.
The deadliest flames have occurred in Portugal, where a pilot of an aerial firefighting plane lost his life on Friday when his aircraft crashed while he was conducting an operation in the Foz Côa region close to the Spanish border.
This week’s flames in Portugal caused more than 160 injuries and hundreds of people to be evacuated; it was the first fatality associated with them so far this year.
According to Portugal’s health ministry, 238 people, mostly older people with underlying diseases, died as a result of the heatwave that occurred between July 7 and July 13.
Firefighters in Portugal had some relief on Saturday as temperatures in the majority of the nation dipped somewhat after reaching about 40C in recent days.
We’ve had significant fires, and we don’t want them to flare up again. Andre Fernandes, commander of the emergency and civil protection authority, told reporters, “We will maintain exceptional vigilance this weekend.
This year’s early start to fire season is due to an extremely dry and hot spring that dried up the soil.
Extreme temperatures, which experts attribute to climate change, have fuelled the fires. This week, flames have also been battled in Croatia, Hungary, California, and Morocco.
Data from the Institute for the Conservation of Nature and Forests showed that a total of 39,550 hectares (98,000 acres) of Portugal were destroyed by wildfires from the beginning of the year through mid-June, more than quadruple the amount in the same period last year.
In the past week, fires have burned an area about two-thirds of that size.
The UK government has made every machinery available to it in order to prevent adverse situations in light of Britain’s weather forecaster issuing its first-ever red “severe heat” warning for portions of England on Monday and Tuesday.
For the following Monday and Tuesday, when temperatures could hit record highs, the British Met Office issued a national emergency declaration.
According to the news agency Reuters, on Thursday, flames erupted across tinder-dry land in Portugal, Spain, France, and Croatia as a result of a severe heatwave that has caused temperatures to soar to around 40 degrees Celsius in some areas.
While the highest temperature ever recorded in Britain was 38.7 degrees Celsius on July 25, 2019, the Met Office reported that temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius were now being predicted for the first time in Britain.
According to Paul Gundersen, chief meteorologist for the Met Office, “exceptional, possibly record-breaking temperatures are predicted early next week,” with a 50% likelihood that temperatures would exceed 40 degrees Celsius and an 80% possibility that a new record will be set for the highest temperature.
According to the news agency AP, the British government will conduct an emergency response conference on Saturday to make plans for potentially record-breaking heat waves.
Schools and nursing homes have been encouraged to take precautions to safeguard kids and elderly inhabitants because children and the elderly are thought to be more susceptible to high temperatures.
The Met Office has issued a warning, according to the news agency PTI, that “adverse health impacts” may affect a wide range of people and not just those who are most susceptible to excessive heat.
The head of the Met Office, Penny Endersby, called the forecast for high temperatures “totally unusual” and urged people to heed the warnings.
High water temperatures also pose a threat to further diminish France’s already exceptionally low nuclear output, putting further strain on operator EDF at a time when half of its reactors are down due to corrosion and maintenance concerns.
The valley between the Rhone and Garrone rivers has recently experienced oppressive heat; on Friday, temperatures are predicted to reach over 40 degrees Celsius and stay above seasonal averages through early next week.
On Friday, authorities in Europe issued health warnings for the impending heatwave as hundreds more people were forced from their homes as wildfires scorched territory in France, Spain, and Portugal.
In the meantime, a Friday morning firefighting operation in Portugal’s northeast resulted in the death of the pilot of a firefighting plane. The fatality occurred when fires raged in France, Portugal’s neighbor Spain, and throughout Portugal.
Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa posted a tweet on his official Twitter account saying, “It was with profound dismay that I became aware of the death of the pilot who operated an aircraft that collapsed this afternoon.”
As the UK prepares for record temperatures, an amber warning for excessive heat has been issued for England and portions of Wales.
On Monday and Tuesday, when England’s alert level reaches its first red level, the Met Office issue a warning that includes southern Scotland.
The UK’s warmest day of the year occurred on Sunday, when temperatures in all of England and Wales rose above 30C (86F), with a high of 33C in Flintshire.
On Monday, the temperature is expected to reach 41C, a record high for the UK.
In 2019, Cambridge established the current temperature record of 38.7C.
Wales’s and the UK’s warmest day of the year so far was Sunday at Hawarden, Flintshire, where the temperature reached 33 degrees.
In Nantwich, Cheshire, England, the temperature reached 32 degrees, while in Auchincruive, Ayrshire, Scotland, it reached 26.4 degrees.
The temperature reached 27.7C in Armagh on Northern Ireland’s warmest day of the year thus far.
Due to the weather on Sunday, beaches all around the country were crowded, with cars backed up for kilometers at Camber Sands in East Sussex.
According to Downing Street, the heatwave is being handled as a national emergency.
However, while they try to cool off, individuals are being reminded to exercise caution when near water.
On Saturday, a teenager drowned while swimming in Salford Quays, and a man has gone missing after swimming in a reservoir in West Yorkshire.
Meanwhile, water suppliers issued warnings that higher demand was causing some homes to experience decreased water pressure and supply issues.
Low pressure may affect homes in London, Essex, and Surrey, according to Affinity Water, Anglian Water reported service outages in King’s Lynn, and South East Water also noted sporadic issues.
London, Manchester, and York are among the locations covered by the Met Office’s red heat advisory, the maximum level, for Monday and Tuesday.
Since the heat warning system was introduced last year, it hasn’t been given before.
All of Wales, southern Scotland, and the remainder of England are now included in the amber warnings that were previously in effect for those days.
An amber alert means that some people are more likely to experience health issues, significant adjustments must be made to work and daily routines, water safety incidents may rise as more people visit the shore, lakes, and rivers, and transport delays may be possible.
The government is implementing additional measures; for Monday and Tuesday, more ambulance call handlers and increased capacity for the 111 helplines are scheduled.
In addition, LNER said that there will be no trains running between London and Leeds and York on Tuesday. Network Rail and Transport for London have advised travelers to only travel on Monday and Tuesday if absolutely necessary.
People should keep themselves “well-hydrated throughout these special couple of days,” according to Thomas Waite, deputy chief medical officer for England, and seek out cool locations.
Hospitals will be “very, really pressed” in the upcoming days, according to the chairman of the NHS Confederation. The NHS “will cope,” but “coping isn’t good enough,” according to Lord Victor Adebowale on Times Radio.
In order to address the heatwave, the administration conducted an urgent Cobra conference on Saturday. The prime minister was criticized by Labour for his alleged absence as well as for his intentions to host a private lunch at Chequers on Sunday for a few Conservative MPs.
Boris Johnson was accused of being “absent in action again” by deputy leader Angela Rayner, who claimed he was “preparing to party while Britain boils.”
In the midst of the Tory leadership contest, Alok Sharma, the COP26 summit’s president and the head of the government’s efforts to reduce climate-damaging carbon emissions, stated that he would not rule out resigning if the prime ministerial candidates fell short on “net zero,” the government’s plans to do so.
Different levels of support for the policy have been indicated by the five Conservative leadership contenders.
According to Mr. Sharma in an interview with the Observer, some of those in positions of power had a “lukewarm” attitude toward net zero, and the policy would be necessary to stop “great damage” to the nation’s status abroad.
When asked if he could resign over the matter, he responded, “I don’t rule anything out and I don’t rule anything in.
The first week of next week will see several schools closed and some hospital appointments canceled.
For the safety of “workers, visitors, animals, and plants,” Chester Zoo announced that it would close on Monday and
Tuesday. The air conditioning on a children’s oncology hospital in Cardiff failed.
Deadly wildfires have started in southwestern France, Portugal, and Spain across Europe.
Due to the possibility of wildfires, firefighters have advised people to go on picnics rather than barbecues.
The condition is unprecedented, according to BBC Weather forecaster Susan Powell.
She predicted that the UK would break its temperature record by 80%. On Monday, the country of England could experience highs of 41°C, with an average temperature of 38°C for Wales and England.
In eastern England, Tuesday’s highs are expected to reach 40C or higher. She also predicted that the temperature records in Scotland and Northern Ireland would be shattered.
In addition, the temperature overnight on Monday into Tuesday may also reach a record high, with highs of 25C predicted.
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), in addition to the Met Office warning, has issued its highest level four heat alert to health and care organizations, warning that illness and death could occur “among the fit and well.”
Heart attacks and strokes brought on by the stress of maintaining normal body temperatures typically account for the majority of mortality during a heatwave.
The working conditions of employees in the stifling heat have drawn the attention of unions.
According to the TUC, companies should allow office personnel to work from home or modify their hours to prevent traffic during rush hour.
Manual laborers, according to Unite, are particularly vulnerable. “Employers should consider rescheduling work to cooler periods of the day, and provide cooling spaces such as shade or air-conditioned restrooms,” the union advises.
“The employer should take urgent action to guarantee that employees stop working and are given time to recover, without being penalized for doing so,” states the law.