Western Europeans Wilt in Early Summer Heatwave, Compounding Climate Change Fears

Environmental News from Europe: 

  • Spaniards swelter as temperatures head above 40 Celsius
  • Outdoor events stopped in part of France, drought hits Italy
  • Even hats off allowed at upmarket British horse-racing event

Spain headed for its hottest early summer temperatures in four decades on Friday, one area of France banned outdoor events, and drought stalked Italian farmers as a heatwave sent Europeans hunting for shade and fretting over climate change.

Such was the heat that England’s upscale Royal Ascot Racecourse even saw a rare change of protocol: guests were allowed to shed hats and jackets once the royals had passed.

“Avoid over-exposing to the sun, hydrate and take care of the most vulnerable so they don’t suffer from heat stroke,” was the advice from Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez in Madrid during an event, fittingly, about desertification.

Temperatures were due to reach 40 to 42 degrees Celsius (104-108 Fahrenheit) in Madrid and Zaragoza, in central and eastern Spain respectively, the national weather agency AEMET said. Those would be levels not seen so early in the year since 1981.

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Source: Reuters

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