The current heat wave in Greece is set to become the longest in the country’s recorded history.
“According to the data, we will probably go through 16 to 17 days of a heat wave, which has never happened before in our country,” Kostas Lagouvardos, senior official of the national weather institute, said on Saturday.
In addition, Greece is currently experiencing its hottest weekend in July in 50 years. It is predicted that the mercury today higher than 40 °C and Sunday to 45 °C will rise
Athens is expected to go temperatures above 40 °C experienced for the next six to seven days.
“According to the latest forecasts, the heat wave could last until next Thursday or Friday,” says Yannis Kallianos, meteorologist at the private broadcaster Mega.
The Greek authorities, who meanwhile have to fight dozens of forest fires in the midst of strong northerly winds, warned people not to venture outside unnecessarily.
The country’s unusually high temperatures also mean that popular tourist destinations such as the Acropolis will be closed during the hottest part of the day.
Greece defines a heat wave as a period when the temperature is 39 °C reach or exceed. The previous heat wave record in Greece was set in 1987, when the scorching temperature lasted for 11 days.
World’s hottest July yet
Gavin Schmidt, a climatologist from Nasa, meanwhile said that July 2023 is on track to be the world’s hottest month yet – not only since records began, but “in hundreds, if not thousands, of years”, says Schmidt.
These unusually high temperatures cannot only be attributed to the El Niño weather phenomenon, as the weather phenomenon has only emerged recently and is only expected to strengthen later in the year.
El Niño is associated with warming ocean surface temperatures in the central and eastern tropical Pacific.
Schmidt says current high temperatures are expected to continue, “and the reason we think so is because we continue to put greenhouse gases into the atmosphere”.