“Heat Apocalypse” Blasts Europe As UK And France Brace For Hottest Days On Record

“Heat Apocalypse” Blasts Europe As UK And France Brace For Hottest Days On Record

A dangerous heatwave that has sparked wildfires across southwest Europe is set to push the mercury to new records in the U.K. and France early this week.

The U.K. Met Office forecasts 104°F (40°C) temperatures could be recorded Monday. The prior record stands at 101.66°F (38.7°C), set in 2019. Britain declared a widespread “red” heat warning days ago for the first time in history. 

Here are the latest temps across the UK:

The top ten hottest days in the UK have been recorded in the last three decades.

Extreme heat is disrupting travel across the U.K. Temporary speed restrictions were placed across London’s tube system, with transportation officials worried hot rails could buckle. 

Rufus Cameron, 26, told NYTimes that he’s headed for his parent’s house in southern England because “his flat is hot, outside it’s hot, it’s all a bit much.”

“In England, we have no idea how to deal with this kind of heat,” Cameron said, adding he’s worried about potential delays to the national rail system because of speed restrictions. 

“But what can we do with the infrastructure that we have in England,” he added. “It’s not built for this.” 

A recent report via Britain’s Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy found only 5% of homes in England have air conditioning units installed. With temperatures expected to hit records today, this could increase the risks of elevated heat-related illnesses, including heat stroke and exhaustion. 

The extreme heat is also punishing France. Massive wildfires are spreading across southern France, parts of Spain, and Portugal, with more than ten thousand evacuated in France alone. 

French firefighters cleared a three-mile-long and 130-foot-wide stretch of land in southwestern France to control a wildfire from spreading. 

Tour de France cyclists were given the day off after above-average temperatures were considered too dangerous for the Rodez to Carcassonne stretch, in southwestern France, on Monday. Tour organizers had to spray some areas of roads with water to prevent melting asphalt from disrupting the race. 

The heat wave is also proving disruptive to French utility Electricite de France SA’s nuclear power generation, which could have widespread effects across European power markets. 

… and more bad news for power markets. 

Meteorologists described the climate situation in Europe as “an apocalypse of heat.”  

Extreme heat can be deadly. More than 1,000 heat-related deaths have been reported in Spain and Portugal in recent days. 

The heatwave is the second to scorch parts of southwest Europe this month. The latest developed in northwest Africa, producing a heat dome and an area of low pressure west of Iberia, feeding heat into the continent. 

Tyler Durden
Mon, 07/18/2022 – 09:33

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