Europe is broiling under all-time record temperatures, well above 40 degrees Celsius, and the world should get used to baking like this right up until the last Republican who says anthropomorphic global warming is a hoax dies from heat exhaustion.
Never in recorded history has Paris been hotter than it was on Thursday.
The same was true of Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands, as temperatures rose and records tumbled one by one across Western Europe, scorching the continent and sending residents scrambling to seek relief from a dangerous heat wave.
In Paris, the temperature soared to 42.6 degrees Celsius (108.6 Fahrenheit), breaking a record set in 1947, 40.4 degrees Celsius, according to the French national weather service, which said the temperatures could rise further. Some 20 million people in northern France were expected to be affected by the heat.
In the Netherlands, temperatures topped 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit), shattering the record high set only a day earlier, the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute said. In Germany, the northwestern town of Lingen hit 41.5 Celsius (106.7 Fahrenheit).
And for the second time this week, Belgium measured its hottest day, with a temperature of 40.6 Celsius in Kleine Brogel (105 Fahrenheit) on Thursday passing the mark set a day earlier, 40.2 Celsius. The authorities issued a code red alert for the first time since the weather warning system was put in place 20 years ago.
“It’s really shocking to have this heat in Brussels,” said Francesca Van Daele, a student of political science at the Free University of Brussels-VUB. “Our urban planning is not really made for heat waves like this.”
The hottest summers in Europe in the past 500 years have all come in the past 17 years, scientists say. Several heat waves have been linked to human-caused climate change. In the years ahead, they say, many more are likely to scorch temperate zones like northern Europe.
We're maybe a generation away from London having Barcelona's climate, and Barcelona having Cairo's climate. But it's all sunspots and cloud cover and really we should just continue to drive SUVs and strip mine the mountains and belch carbon into the air because everything will be fine.
We won't be around when the generational cohort after today's Gen Z are born in 2020 and after and they grow up in a world with dozens of hundred-degree days, critical water and food shortages, and resource wars. Maybe they'll forgive us posthumously, but I doubt it.
They'll remember my generation especially as cowards who helped elect Trump and wrecked the planet. Hopefully they'll rise up and remove anybody currently over 40 from ever having any sort of political power again and bury us all as the Moron Generation.