Heat waves will break records worldwide because they are so hot. People in North America, Europe, and Asia drank copious amounts of water and sought sanctuary as temperatures crept toward record highs.
According to the European Space Agency, Italy’s Sicily and Sardinia are expected to experience their hottest-ever temperatures this week, reaching 48 degrees Celsius (118 degrees Fahrenheit).
“We thought we would escape the heat, but it’s even hotter here,” Colman Peavy, 30, said as he and his wife Ana began a two-week Italian vacation on an outdoor terrace in central Rome.
After noon on Monday, the temperature was expected to reach 40 degrees Celsius in Rome, where 15,000 people defied the heat the day before to hear Pope Francis lead prayers, using parasols and fans to stay calm.
Under his black robes, Priest Francois Mbemba stated that he was “sweating like hell” and that St. Peter’s Square felt hotter than his diocese in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. On Monday, heatstroke advisories were issued in 32 of Japan’s 47 prefectures, primarily in the country’s central and southwestern regions, as temperatures continued to soar.
Local media reported that at least 60 individuals in Japan were treated for heatstroke.
At least one individual in the city of Hamamatsu dispensed with social shame due to the heat.
“It’s truly unbearable without a parasol, although I must admit it’s a bit embarrassing,” he told NHK as he shielded himself from the sun with an umbrella.
Late in the afternoon, Toyota City, home to the country’s largest automaker, recorded the day’s highest temperature, 39.1 degrees Celsius, as television broadcasters urged people to remain indoors and avoid the life-threatening heat.
The highest temperature registered in Japan was 41.1 degrees Celsius, recorded in Kumagaya in 2018.
As they cleaned their homes, residents in southwestern regions still recovering from recent torrential rain and flooding were warned to remain hydrated.
“Intimidating” US weather
In the United States, Western and southern states, which are accustomed to high temperatures, more than 80 million people were under heat advisories as a “widespread and oppressive” heatwave broiled the region.
Death Valley, California, frequently one of the hottest places on Earth, attained a near-record 52 °C on Sunday afternoon. On Sunday afternoon, Phoenix, Arizona, recorded its 17th consecutive day above 109 degrees Fahrenheit (43 degrees Celsius), reaching 113 F (45 C).
“We’re used to 110, 112 (degrees Fahrenheit)… But not the streaks,” a 64-year-old retiree from the adjacent suburb of Peoria told AFP. “You just have to adapt.”
Multiple wildfires were raging in Southern California, including one in Riverside County that has burned over 7,500 acres (3,000 hectares) and prompted evacuation orders.
Historic peaks are predicted.
In Europe, Italians were cautioned to prepare for “the most intense heatwave of the summer and one of the most intense heatwaves in history.”
In 16 locations, including Rome, Bologna, and Florence, the health ministry has issued a red alert due to forecasts of record-breaking temperatures in the coming days.
On Tuesday, temperatures in Rome were expected to reach 42 to 43 °C, breaking the record of 40.5 °C set in August 2007.
Greece experienced a brief reprieve on Monday, as temperatures moderated and the Acropolis in Athens reopened after being closed for three days during the warmest part of the day. On Thursday, however, a new heatwave was anticipated, and meteorologists warned of an increased risk of wildfires due to strengthening Aegean Sea winds.
On Monday, temperatures are expected to reach 39 degrees Celsius across most of Romania. Little relief is predicted for Spain, where meteorologists have warned of “abnormally high” temperatures on Monday, including up to 44 degrees Celsius in the southern Andalusia region, which would set a new regional record.
In addition to the heat, regions of Asia have experienced torrential rain.
After at least 40 people were killed in recent flooding and landslides during the monsoon in Romania, expected to continue through Wednesday, South Korea’s president pledged Monday to “completely overhaul” the country’s approach to extreme weather.
Relentless monsoon rains have purportedly killed at least 90 people in northern India following intense heat.
According to experts, flooding and mudslides are common during India’s monsoons, but climate change increases their frequency and severity.
China issued multiple temperature alerts on Sunday, warning 40-45 degrees Celsius in the largely arid region of Xinjiang and 39 degrees Celsius in the southern Guangxi region.
The EU’s climate monitoring service reported last month was the hottest June.