“The fires have already destroyed 6,000 hectares of forest and displaced 6,000 people overnight,” Martin Guesperau, deputy secretary of defense and security for the Nouvel-Aquitaine department, said on Wednesday. rice field.
The A63 main road between Bordeaux and Bayonne will be “closed in both directions”, says Gironde. The county said in a press release on Wednesday. “The fire is highly toxic and has spread across the Landes province,” he added.
The blaze destroyed 16 homes, but no injuries were reported, according to a press release. Authorities said his 500 firefighters, aided by water bombers, had been mobilized to fight the blaze.
“We are about to have a very high-risk and difficult day. The weather is very bad right now,” the official said.
French officials added that they were fighting at least three fires in the south of the country.
The affected area is roughly the size of India and larger than the three US states (Alaska, Texas and California) combined.
When New satellite images from the EU’s climate watchdog Copernicus reveal a nearly cloudless landscape of western Europe experiencing yet another extreme heat wave.
Mercury is again above 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit) in southern England and the Netherlands, while France and Spain face extreme temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit).
According to Copernicus, “This new heat wave is associated with a strong anticyclone causing cloudless conditions over much of Western Europe.”
The current heatwave is the fourth in the region since June.
“According to the Bureau of Meteorology, temperatures between August 9 and 14 were 44°C (111.2°F) in Spain, 40°C (104°F) in France and 35°C (95°F) in the south. It could exceed 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit) in the UK and the Netherlands again,” Copernicus said.
“With the exception of a few slightly cooler days in between, this heat wave is expected to last for the next 10 days,” said CNN meteorologist Chad Myers.
high temperature, little rain
According to Liz Bentley, Chief Executive of the Royal Weather Society, the extreme temperatures Europe is experiencing are thanks to persistent high pressure and strong sunshine.
Western Europe in particular “has been struggling since the beginning of June,” she told CNN Wednesday.
“And when you combine that with the lack of rainfall, parts of Europe now have below average rainfall for 15 to 16 months. The amount of water in the
Bentley continued: “Recent heatwaves are exacerbating the problem as they cause more water to evaporate from land, rivers and reservoirs. Much of Europe is in drought conditions.”
These dry conditions and persistently sweltering temperatures have led to wildfires, which Bentley said are “not all that uncommon” in Europe. But she said, “The season started very early and is much more sustained and far-reaching than we usually see.
She added that the effects of extreme heat and drought are already being seen, for example in agriculture and farming communities.
“This means that crop yields will drop significantly during the summer months, impacting food prices not only in Europe but around the world. Problems in Ukraine due to Russian aggression – over food prices It just makes the whole problem worse.”
Bentley said the latest forecasts from the UK’s Center for Ecology and Hydrology suggest that the situation is unlikely to change soon. Forecast analysis shows temperatures are expected to remain above average in the coming months, exacerbated by below-average precipitation.
CNN’s Judson Jones contributed to this report.