Climate change: Europe witnesses record heatwave, Netherlands sees 15% spike in deaths

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After Japan, where heat waves took a toll of 57 people, with 18,347 people hospitalized last week, reports from Europe are equally alarming with record-breaking temperatures sweeping across the continent this summer. The Netherlands alone has confirmed 400 deaths in a single week.

As per the Dutch national statistics agency, CBS, a total of 2,964 people died during the week commencing July 22 and it indicates a 15 percent rise compared to an average summer week toll in the country.

Reports claimed that the recorded temperature was not the same in the entire continent but for the Netherlands, which has a total population of around 17 million, it actually crossed 40 degree Celsius on July 25. Environmental experts stated that the death toll was comparable to the two heatwaves in 2006, which were among the longest ever in the country.

Most of the death reports came from the eastern side of the Netherlands, where the temperatures were higher and the heat waves stayed longer than other parts of the country. However, it should be noted that as per official statistics, almost 300 of the additional fatalities were among those people aged 80 or above.

It was a second heatwave of the month to hit Europe. Climate researchers became worried because of such heatwave bursts. They also mentioned that it is possible that such unexpected environmental incidents could become normal as the greenhouse gas emissions are making the earth warmer.

In a statement, Jean-Noel Thepaut, head of the Copernicus Climate Change Service said that while July is usually the warmest month of the year for the globe, as per their data "it also was the warmest month recorded globally, by a very small margin."

Thepaut also added that "With continued greenhouse gas emissions and the resulting impact on global temperatures, records will continue to be broken in the future."

However, as per The Washington Post, scientists officially announced July 2019 as the hottest month in the recorded history since the record-keeping began over a century ago.

It also mentioned that Switzerland officials also painted stretches of rail tracks white to keep then from buckling in the extreme heat, while wildfires raged across millions of acres in the Arctic and a massive ice melt in Greenland released 197 billion tons of water into the Atlantic Ocean caused further rising of sea levels.