This year’s record-setting heatwave (aptly named Cerberus after the infernal multi-headed hound) has reduced large areas of southern Europe and North Africa to kindling.
And now blazes are raging (with lives lost) across the region:
- 🇩🇿 Thousands of soldiers have been deployed around Algeria to tame the country’s 97 wildfires
- 🇬🇷 Authorities in Greece have carried out the country’s biggest-ever evacuation after 62 new wildfires erupted there just on Saturday (the hottest day of the summer so far), and
- 🇮🇹 Italian authorities have had to shut airports and cancel flights in Palermo and Catania, cutting off Sicily’s two main air links.
Fires are also burning in France, Spain, Turkey, Croatia, and basically any other Mediterranean country you can think of.
Intrigue’s take: Wildfires are a common phenomenon in the Mediterranean, but the UN’s latest scientific review foreshadowed climate change’s exacerbating role there.
And there’s a regional piece at play, too: the Union for the Mediterranean was set up precisely to deepen disaster relief cooperation across the Mediterranean. It’s apparently struggled for attention lately, but something tells us that’ll change after this summer.
Also worth noting: