October 2, 2022

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Europe helps Portugal fight forest fires amid intense heat wave

Europe helps Portugal fight forest fires amid intense heat wave

Several wildfires are raging across Portugal, as a state of emergency has been declared amid a severe heat wave sweeping Europe, with temperatures expected to rise even higher in the coming days.

As of Sunday, an estimated 3,000 firefighters were working to put out the blazes, with areas along the Lisbon suburbs worst affected, Portugal’s Civil Protection Agency said. On Sunday, local authorities said that at least 29 people have been injured since the fires broke out.

On Monday, the European Commission said it had “mobilized the firefighting fleet to help Portugal fight the devastating wildfires”, as residents evacuated their homes in danger zones.

Portugal weather experts said temperatures as high as 113 degrees Fahrenheit (45 degrees Celsius) could be reported on Tuesday in the Alentejo – the area between Lisbon and the Algarve, Sky News reported. Strong winds of 40 mph are also expected across several areas. On Monday, local media reported that fires broke out in the provinces of Santarem, Leiria and Vila Real ‘Most worrying’.

Forest fires are not uncommon in Portugal, a densely forested country fueled by winds from the Atlantic Ocean. Spain, which has also seen devastating forest fires in recent weeks, sent two firefighting planes to Portugal on Sunday, as did the European Union. He said She was “willing to provide further assistance”.

Experts say extreme temperatures and unusually warm temperatures will become more frequent and intense as the world grapples with the effects of human-caused climate change. Last month, a historic heat wave across Europe broke records in France and Spain, with temperatures reaching 104 degrees, which is unusual for June.

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Scientists have long warned that climate change is extending Portugal’s ‘forest fire season’ by two to five months, according to the BBC. mentioned. In 2017, more than 100 people died in fires that led to widespread condemnation of the government’s response to the bushfires. Some emergency workers complained of a lack of equipment, while others said the forests were not properly managed or protected.

Present The nationwide emergency means that people are prevented from entering forest areas that are considered high risk and that farmers are required not to use any kind of machinery that may cause a spark.

Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa took to Twitter during the Weekendwriting, “Please do not start fires and do not use machinery.”

The use of fireworks at celebrations and festivals has also been banned amid high temperatures and drought, according to the Associated Press. mentioned.

Fires broke out quickly in some areas. One witness said, “It was very sudden, thick smoke, and suddenly the old house lit up.” He told the BBC on Monday.

In Spain last month, wildfires broke out near Valencia and across other parts of the country after days of scorching heat. In Italy, Rome recorded its highest temperature at 105°F (40.6°C).

Poland and Austria were also hit b Abnormally high temperatures as was the case in Britain, a country where air conditioning is scarce – raising fears for the elderly and the homeless.

Hannah Kluck, a climate scientist at the University of Reading, He told the Washington Post Britain is “really not prepared” for extreme heat, as offices, homes and nursing homes “were not built to help keep people cool”.

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