Publication Date August 6, 2017

Heatwave in the South of Europe, a taste of the future

Photo: The Brussels Times via Belga

An extreme heatwave hit the South of Europe on Saturday, killing several people and causing millions of Euros worth of damage for the Agriculture industry.

Scientists say this is just a taste of what climate change could have in store for the continent in the future.

The heatwave has caused at least 5 deaths in Italy and Romania since it hit Southern Europe at the beginning of August.

Exceptionally high temperatures, some of them never seen before, have been recorded in Spain, Portugal, the South of France, Italy, Hungary and the Balkans.

Temperatures hit 40° in some places, making the drought worse. It is a prolongation of the heatwave that began back in July and caused several forest fires. One fire in Portugal killed 60 people. 

In Italy, where at least three people died because of the heatwave, admissions to A&E have increased by 15% to 20% over the last few days. Italians have nicknamed the heatwave “Lucifero”, or Lucifer.

Humidity and other factors in Italy have also pushed the “feels-like” temperature even higher, especially in the Campania region near Naples. The estimated feels-like temperature was 55° on Friday.

Several record temperatures were recorded in the South-East of France on Friday. Temperatures were especially high in Montpellier, Figari and Corsica, where thermometers showed 42.7°C according to Météo France.