Europe is sweltering in heatwave; health alerts are issued

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LEIRIA(PORTUGAL/LONDON) Hundreds of people were forced from their homes after wildfires scorched France. SpainAnd PortugalOfficials from Europe issued warnings about the possible heatwave on Friday. Since Tuesday, more than 1,000 firefighters have fought to control two fires in southwest Texas, with the support of water-bomber planes. FranceThey have been encouraged by intense heat, tinder box conditions and strong winds.
While temperatures dipped a little in Portugal, they were still expected to top 40°C in some places, with five districts on red alert and more than 1,000 firefighters tackling 17 wildfires. The environment ministry in Spain said that it was working to tackle 17 wildfires throughout the country. The worst drought in more than 70 years has been reduced. Italy’s longest river, the Po, to little more than a trickle in places.
Italy has declared a state of emergency along the Po, which supports about a third of the country’ agricultural production, after facing its hottest July since 1800, with temperatures expected to rise next week. Officials are worried about the effects on people’s health and on healthcare systems already challenged by the Covid-19. The World Meteorological OrganizationAccording to some, the heatwave will worsen air quality, particularly in cities. Portugal experienced 238 additional deaths as a result of the heatwave, which occurred between July 7th and July 13th. Spain saw 84 deaths from extreme heat during the heatwave’s first three days.



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