Home Lifestyle More than 20,000 people have died in western Europe this summer due to heatwaves and record high temperatures

More than 20,000 people have died in western Europe this summer due to heatwaves and record high temperatures

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This summer in Western Europe, extreme heat has killed more than 20,000 people, according to the latest official figures. The continent has been hit by a series of severe heat waves and record temperatures.

These bouts of heat waves are likely to become more frequent and intense due to human-caused climate change.

According to the latest official figures from the UK, Germany, Spain and France, excess deaths, i.e. the difference between the number of deaths recorded and the number expected based on previous trends, was significantly higher during periods of extreme heat that hit the country. Western Europe this summer.

France, which has designated its public health agency 10,420 excess deaths this summer, They account for nearly half of all extreme heat-related deaths in Western Europe, although the covid-19 pandemic is likely responsible for some of them.

Nearly 3,000 deaths It occurred during one of three heat waves to hit France this summer, which the agency said was the second hottest recorded in the country since 1900.

according to’National Statistics Office and the Health Security Agency from uk, 3271 excess deaths It was registered in England and Wales between 1Verse June and September 7, That is 6.2% more than the five-year average (this figure does not take into account excess coronavirus-related deaths, and the agencies noted that the number of deaths was higher on hot days).

In Germany, more than 4,500 heat-related deaths It was recorded this summer, according to the Robert Koch Institute, which said 2022 was the hottest summer in the country since weather records began in 1881.

In Spain, 4,655 deaths have been recorded Linked to heat waves between June and August, according to the Carlos III Health Institute.

This summer was the hottest on record in Europe. The average summer temperature of 2022 broke the previous record set in 2021, and since 2015 temperatures have never been higher. Parts of France, Britain and Spain recorded record temperatures during the heatwaves that hit Western Europe this summer. Experts largely attribute the extreme heat to climate change and warn that the situation is likely to worsen in the future. Europe is warming much faster than other parts of the world. The European Health Agency has warned that epidemics such as malaria and dengue could become more common in warmer Europe, and that Europe’s elderly population is less prepared to withstand extreme temperatures. By the end of the century, some reports estimate that up to 90,000 people He could die every year in Europe because of the heat.

Altogether, the extreme heat caused by climate change has cost $16 trillion in the global economy between 1992 and 2013, according to one study, but the actual number could be as high as $65 trillion. Extreme heat affects human health, productivity and agricultural production, all of which affect the economy. As with many of the consequences of climate change, this burden is borne disproportionately by the poorest people, who generally contribute the least to global warming.

Translated article from the American magazine Forbes – Author: Robert Hart

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