More than 1,000 people fled a wildfire in southern Portugal, as Europe’s latest blast of heat intensified over the Iberian peninsula.
(Bloomberg) — More than 1,000 people fled a wildfire in southern Portugal, as Europe’s latest blast of heat intensified over the Iberian peninsula.
Over 800 firefighters were battling to contain a blaze near the town Odemira, as strong winds drove a blaze in the wooded hills where the Portuguese regions of Alentejo and the Algarve meet. A temperature of 46.4C (115.5F) was recorded in Santarem on Monday. In total, almost 3,000 firefighters are tackling wildfires across the country.
The risk of wildfires continues across the Mediterranean, with authorities in Greece on high alert after 54 blazes were brought under control in the past 24 hours. Greek was scorched by 1,470 wildfires in July, including one that forced the evacuation of thousands of tourists from the island of Rhodes.
Fossil fuel emissions are driving global warming, which is increasing the intensity of summer heat waves across the Northern Hemisphere from California to Turpan in China. That’s triggering wildfires, flooding and violent storms, disrupting power and transport systems and threatening the health and livelihoods of millions. The world had its hottest ever month in July, following a record June.
Spain has issued red weather warnings for Wednesday, with temperatures forecast to reach 44C in parts of Andalucia. Fires ripped through more than 430 hectares of woodland in Catalonia over the weekend.
In Cyprus, a fire that forced the evacuation of three villages north of Limassol has been brought under control, but strong winds are keeping the authorities on high alert.
Cooler-than-normal conditions are persisting across northern and central Europe, with Cyclone Circe bringing heavy rainfall and strong winds to parts of Italy, Germany, Austria and Serbia. Poland has issued red weather warnings, telling people to avoid traveling through coastal zones facing high winds and waves.
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Swollen rivers in central Europe are curbing the output of hydropower stations. Meanwhile, prices for Nordic and German energy have taken a hit as extreme winds spinning turbines overwhelm the region’s grids. Those negative prices are the latest example of how extreme weather can have a direct impact on markets.
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