Europe battles wildfires in intense warmth


In Spain, helicopters dropped water on the flames as heat above 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) and often mountainous terrain made the job harder for firefighters.

Shocked residents watching thick plumes of smoke rising above the central western Jerte valley said the heat was making their previously green and cool home more like Spain’s semi-arid south.

“Climate change affects everyone,” said resident Miguel Angel Tamayo.

A study published in June in the journal Environmental Research: Climate concluded it was highly probable that climate change was making heatwaves worse.

At least 1,000 deaths have been attributed to the heatwave in Portugal and Spain so far. Temperatures in Spain have reached as high as 45.7 degrees Celsius (114 degrees Fahrenheit) during the nearly week-long heat wave.

The heat wave is due to end in Spain Monday, but firefighters are still tackling wildfires in northern regions including Pumarejo de Tera near Zamora.

Spain’s weather agency issued temperature warnings for Sunday, with highs of 42 degrees Celsius (108 degrees Fahrenheit) forecast in Aragon, Navarra and La Rioja, in the north. It said the…