In our society we don’t like to discuss negative things with others because it brings ” bad vibes.” Yet the world is literally burning around us. It’s crazy to me. It’s not a pleasant topic but it’s not a secret or some hush hush conspiracy theory. We have heat waves in countries who have never had a heat wave.
In France, Spain, Greece , Italy, Lebanon, Portugal and the U.S firefighters are fighting to keep back wild fires. Roads all over are buckling under the heat, bridges are collapsing, railways have become unsafe due to the now soft metal made too hot by the sun. I mean seriously the sun is melting the metal now. It’s becoming something out of a sci-fi movie.
The World Meteorological Organization ( WMO )warns heatwaves, raging wild fires and record breaking temperatures are becoming normal because of climate change.General Petteri Taalas said he has no doubt what is behind this phenomenon. ” Thanks to climate change we have started breaking records nationally and also regionally. In the future, these kinds of heatwaves are going to be normal, and we will see even stronger extremes.” OOOh how lovely! Even stronger extremes? Before long we will not be able to travel by rail way in the heat if this is true. If the extreme heat is already making things fall apart, catch on fire and cause some food shortages what is going to happen when it get’s quote ” More extreme each year?”
Taalas also stated ” In the previous heatwaves in the past few years we have lost big parts of our harvest, and under the current situation with Covid 19 we are already having this global food crisis. Now with the war in the Ukraine and then this heat wave it is going to have further negative impact on agricultural activities.” There are indeed health concerns that come with this heat wave as well.There are some concerns about the spread of infectious diseases. Heat cramps and heat stroke according to the WHO.
” We are very much concerned that when this heatwave coincides with high levels of pollution in the form that will exacerbate the respiratory, cardiovascular and general diseases and conditions.” Taalas said that the world is heading for 2.5 degrees Celcius warming, which means heat waves and other extreme weather events will become a normal part of life for us. They are warning that the time in between the heat waves is becoming shorter, noting the current event was preceded by a similar one in June. They say also that a third heatwave is likely to hit again before this summer is over. Fun times!
In London last Tuesday the London Fire fighter Service received more than 2,600 calls. There were 41 properties destroyed that day and 16 firefighters were injured battling the blazes. On average they get around 350 calls a day on a busy day 500. To jump from 500 on a busy day to 2,600 calls is an extreme jump. The Fire fighters said that the ongoing drought and the high temperatures are the two primary factors that have been contributing to wild fires all over.
In Europe they say the extreme heat is caused by heat domes. ” A heat dome is a term used when a widespread area of high pressure sits over a region or a country and lingers for days or even weeks, trapping a very warm air mass beneath it, An area of high pressure will push air to the surface, and this process will warm the air through compression.” Canada is said to have experienced the heat dome last year.
They had several hundred heat related deaths due to ridiculously high temperatures that persisted for many weeks. They lost structures, entire forests and spent the summer on evacuation alert. This year Canada is experiencing unseasonable record dumps of rain and cool temperatures. The farmers in Canada were off to a slow start with the cooler temps and the lack of sunshine. The temperature reached as high as 55 degrees C which equals to 131 degrees fahrenheit.
Mean while in Australia they are experiencing a very early and very cold autumn and winter that is combined with flooding rains and storms. In the Philippines they have been experiencing tornadoes which are not common there and typhoons are becoming more and more forceful as well. All around the globe extreme heat or extreme weather is destroying roads, bridges and melting rooftops. It was so hot in London that their airport run way actually melted. MELTED guys!! Have you ever imagined such a thing?
A museum roof top melted in china. In the city of Chongqing the roof top of The Forbidden City Cultural Relics Museum got so hot that it dissolved the underlying tar causing the Chinese tiles to pop off. Some places have started to paint their rail ways white to absorb less heat and expand less to help reduce the delays during the hot weather. In Texas the ground is so hot and then with the lack of rain the underground pipes are starting to burst resulting in an unusually high amount of water main breaks.
So what happens next??
Experts are saying that it is possible to start to prepare for heat waves. They are going to continue to happen we might as well prepare. We need to adapt our buildings and working hours to deal with the higher temperatures. They also mention the benefits to urban greening. Where more trees and other vegetation can help to cool down cities and towns. On a individual level they say staying hydrated, adjusting our sleep schedules to being awake at night and sleeping in the hottest parts of the day as well as keeping the air flowing in rooms is vitally as important as staying hydrated.
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