Climate change makes lethal heat waves and ‘mega-fires’ more likely in Spain, studies claim

DEADLY heat waves like that seen in Europe this summer and ‘mega-fires’ capable of destroying swathes of lands will happen more in Spain because of climate change, new studies claim.

Researchers from World Weather Attribution (WWA) and the Red Cross found climate change made heat waves which led to deaths in France were made at least five times more likely.

Climate Centre Director Maarten van Aalst said: “What this study points out is that we must not lower our guard against the impact of climate change.”

A separate study from the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) found that Spain and other parts of Mediterranean Europe could see more ‘mega-fires’ in future.

Sixth-generation mega-fires, the scientific name for the blazes, typically spread quickly, are uncontrollable and deadly. A fire which broke out in Portugal last year near to the Spanish province of Huelva in Andalucia was like such mega-fires.

The study found that Spain was second in Europe in terms of the number of wildfires which occur on average every year with 12,174. Portugal came first with 22,693 while Greece came third with 9,222.

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Joe Gerrard

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