Floods Take Deadly Toll in Greece and Turkey

Floods left a trail of devastation across Greece and Turkey, while Paris and London are baking under an autumnal heat wave.

(Bloomberg) — Floods left a trail of devastation across Greece and Turkey, while Paris and London are baking under an autumnal heat wave.

After suffering deadly wildfires over the summer, Greece was hit by Storm Daniel this week. It left three people dead and halted traffic on the main highway between Athens and the country’s second-largest city of Thessaloniki. There were delays at airports, with tourist flights to the island of Skiathos canceled. The storm, which has flooded farms in central Greece, will ease this evening.

In Turkey, at least five people died when floodwaters carrying logs and uprooted trees swept away houses near the city of Kirklareli. Two lives were also lost in Istanbul, where subway stations were inundated after torrential rain. Transport services are being restored on Thursday.

Fossil fuel emissions are warming the planet, triggering extreme weather from heat waves and wildfires to violent storms and flooding. This summer was the warmest on record globally by a large margin as searing heat impacted the Northern Hemisphere from China to California, according to Europe’s Earth observation agency Copernicus.

In Karditsa in central Greece, residents were forced to seek refuge on roofs as the floodwaters rose.

Greece’s Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitstoakis postponed his scheduled speech on Saturday in Thessaloniki, where he was going to unveil his priorities for the coming period. Instead, he will visit areas impacted by the storm and make a trip to the northern city next week.

“We will continue to see more climate records and more intense and frequent extreme weather events impacting society and ecosystems, until we stop emitting greenhouse gases,” said Samantha Burgess, deputy director of the Copernicus Climate Change Service.

The heat over northern and central Europe will continue for up to seven days in parts of Germany and France. Paris is forecast to reach a maximum temperature of 34C (93F) on Friday and Sunday, according to Maxar Technologies Inc.

The UK is also experiencing unseasonably warm weather, with a peak high of 31C expected for London on Saturday.

Last month was the warmest August on record globally and the second-warmest month ever — only after July 2023. August also saw the all-time highest global monthly average sea surface temperatures, while the North Atlantic reached a new daily high of 25.19C on the last day of the month.

(Updates with Greek prime ministers postponing speech in sixth paragraph)

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