Humans populate the earth, use their wealth to ensure their survival and materials to protect themselves. But this increased use of these resources has generated significant pollution as well as an increase in greenhouse gas emissions. Humans, believing they are creating their wealth and well-being, have caused a warming of the temperature of the planet that shelters them. Heat waves, polar episodes, and giant waves are expected in the coming decades, according to meteorologists.
These heat waves are more intense and at higher temperatures are increasingly intense. They are so called because they are characterized by high heat day and night. The reason behind this increase in nighttime temperature is a phenomenon called urban heat islands.
At nightfall, the usual scenario would be a cooling of the temperature. But the materials that make up the roads and buildings in the city absorb heat during the day to release it in the evening. These heat waves testify to the variations in the Earth’s climate , they actually doubled between the period 1990-2010 compared to the period between 1950-1990 as specified by Raphaëlle Kounkou-Arnaud , Head of the “Study and climatology” division at Météo -France.
This heat wave can have catastrophic consequences in terms of human and animal loss. Thus, in 2003, a heat wave caused the death of nearly 15,000 people in three weeks. Terrestrial and aquatic fauna is nevertheless spared by the heat wave since, according to the Observer , the bees no longer collect crops and risk starving to death due to the catastrophic climatic conditions and the heat wave. Similarly, this heat wave would be the cause of the death of several hundred fish in the pond of the municipality of Marignane. Furthermore, and always in the same context, the polar circle is also experiencing serious temperature increases as a result of climate change.
Vigilance is therefore essential and for this purpose, it would be important to point out that there are four levels of vigilance concerning the heat wave:
– Level 1 (green) which is equivalent to a seasonal watch
– Level 2 (yellow) which is a heat warning
– Level 3 (orange) which indicates an alert concerning a heat wave
– Level 4 and therefore the highest level high which is a red code and encourages general mobilization.
During this period of a heat wave, up to 78 departments were put in orange vigilance mode while 4 were decreed according to a red code, it is a unique case never yet occurred on French soil.
The climatic projections made by Météo France show that following the changes due to the phenomenon of global warming , the heat wave episode of 2003 will indeed be the norm for summer temperatures towards the end of the 21st century . century. France is not the only country affected, but several European countries because of the hot air from the Sahara which exceeded the temperature records recorded before. The countries whose thermal thresholds were particularly high are in Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Portugal, and Poland.
Would there be measures to be taken to avoid this kind of disaster in the future?
As Nicolas Hulot says , “In terms of climate, we are on the threshold of irreversibility”. The former minister for ecological transition had sounded the alarm bell and had proposed to accelerate preventive measures against global warming. Thus, according to E-RSE, energy is one of the main causes of global warming (electricity, gas, heating, etc.) due to the emission of CO2. It would thus be wiser to
– Reduce the use of means of transport, in particular cars, and encourage the circulation of smaller vehicles, consuming less fuel;
– Renovate buildings by installing better insulation for energy optimization;
– Switch to carbon-free energy such as wind, solar, or hydropower;
– Fight against deforestation;
– Implement more ecological agriculture.
What precautions should be taken in the event of a heat wave?
With the summer period already here, there are a series of precautions to take to protect yourself and ensure the well-being of your loved ones as well. Especially since with the above explanations, we are never safe from another heat wave or heat wave . The Ministry of Solidarity and Health has developed some essential recommendations to take into account in the event of a heat wave.
– If within your group of friends or your family you know a fragile, elderly or disabled person living alone, you can register them at the town hall to receive human help in times of high temperatures.
– Draw up a list of air-conditioned places near you to cool off if necessary: church, shops, cinema…
– In periods of high heat, do not stay isolated and keep in touch with your loved ones as you go.
– Avoid going out between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. and avoid exertion during these hot periods.
– Cool your interior during the day while keeping the windows closed during the day.
– Wear loose, light-textured clothes with light colors. Prefer cotton clothes.
– Drink water regularly and keep some nearby.
– Absolutely do not drink alcohol during high temperatures.
– Use a fan and an atomizer.