Environmental News from Europe:
- Blaze near Athens as hundreds evacuated
- Hundreds flee in Tuscany as fire-hit gas tanks explode
- Step up climate fight, UK warned, after the hottest day
- New power use records are expected in parts of the Central U.S.
- China braces for new heatwave; it could last well into August
Emergency services battled wildfires across swathes of southern Europe amid mass evacuations on Wednesday, as warnings sounded in London after Britain’s hottest day that the fight against climate change needed to be stepped up.
A blaze fuelled by gale-force winds raged in the mountains north of Athens, forcing hundreds, including hospital patients, to evacuate, and similar numbers fled in central Italy as gas tanks caught in a forest fire near the Tuscan town of Lucca exploded.
A brutal heatwave settled over southern Europe last week, part of a currently developing global pattern of rising temperatures – widely attributed by scientists and climatologists to human activity – that is forecast to dump searing heat on to much of China into late August.
It is also expected to trigger record power consumption in Central U.S. states – thereby adding to the greenhouse gas emissions that nations across the world have pledged to cut – as homes and businesses crank up air conditioners to combat soaring temperatures predicted to last into next week.
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