By Athena Papakosta

It’s hot. Very hot and we still have a lot of… summer ahead of us.

The planet already experienced the hottest week in its history in 2023 (3-9 July) and in Europe alone more than 61,000 people lost their lives last summer due to high temperatures.

According to scientists, we will be driven more often to extreme conditions of high temperatures due to man-made climate change. Even the smallest increase in average temperature will have consequences, and extreme heat waves will be longer, more frequent and more intense.

As experts from the Department of Climate and Health at the Institute of Global Health in Barcelona report, if proper prevention measures are not taken, heat-related mortality will break the barrier of 68,000 deaths every year by 2030 and 94,000 deaths by 2040.

At the moment, Greece is “melting” due to heat wave “Kleon”, while the whole of southern Europe is preparing for a “hot” weekend.

In the south of Spain, the meteorological service reported that the thermometer will reach 45 degrees Celsius, while yesterday, Wednesday, more than 100 stations of the country’s national meteorological service had recorded temperatures of at least 35 degrees Celsius and the clock still showed 6 in the morning.

In Italy, 10 cities – from Bolzano in the north to Bologna, Florence and Rome further south – have been put on alert, urging the elderly and those in vulnerable groups to avoid travel. As for Sardinia, temperatures there may reach 48 degrees Celsius in the coming days.

However, Lombardy was again hit by floods with trees uprooted and roofs of buildings destroyed. More than 200 firefighters responded to calls from citizens in Milan, near the Malpensa airport area, the city of Lecco, areas of Lake Como, Sondrio in the Alps and Bergamo.

High temperatures are also recorded in France, Germany and Poland while, in the United States of America, heatwaves and floods also make up the scene of a weather that has now gone crazy.

Phoenix is ​​”burning” and the Hudson Valley in New York flooded after torrential rains with Arkansas issuing flash flood warnings and ocean temperatures in Florida now reaching 32C.

According to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration “we are in a warm season due to climate change, and combined with El Niño and warm summer conditions, we are seeing record warm surface temperatures in many locations across the the world”.

And the climate future is predicted to be warmer.

The Secretary General of the UN, Antonio Guterres, was categorical when, a few days ago, he underlined that “climate change is out of control” but the minutes of publicity devoted to it are few and indeed for an event that threatens to become the news ” our’ normality.