September 17, 2021

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Canada: The heat wave has already killed at least 500 people

The Heat wave It started a week ago Canada Has already caused the deaths of at least some people 500 people, With the exception of dozens of wildfires and floods in the west of the country, experts say, which is a direct result of the climate crisis.

Lisa Lapoint, forensic director for the province of British Columbia, says the “hot dome” that began to affect the Pacific coast is the most affected CanadaHe pointed out on Friday night that the number of sudden deaths recorded in the past week had already risen to 719.

Lapayint explained that this number was three times higher than normal for that period, so almost 500 deaths The result Heat wave Thermometers in the interior of British Columbia, such as 49.6 degrees Celsius, shot to unprecedented figures.

“We are releasing this information because the extreme weather conditions experienced by British Columbia over the past week have been a significant factor in the increase in the number of deaths,” LaPoint said in a statement.

But the provincial forensic director added that the number would continue to rise in the coming days as the information was updated, as many of the dead were elderly people living alone in homes without air conditioning or they were highly prepared. Temperature.

3 to 500 deaths in five years

To understand the unusual and extreme weather conditions experienced on the Pacific coast Canada Lapoint noted that in the last five years, there have been only three heat-related deaths in the province.

The “heat dome” is known for its meteorological phenomenon involving a mountain of hot air “trapped” in the upper layers of the atmosphere, and it not only caused hundreds of deaths but also overflowed with fires and rivers.

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This Saturday’s data from the British Columbia Forest Fire Service indicates that there have been 245 fires in the past week, with 176 currently active, 76 of which have started in the past two days.

About 70% of fires are caused by lightning, which has found the right dry conditions to start a wildfire. In the 15 hours from Wednesday to Thursday, 113,000 lightning strikes were detected in British Columbia.

One of those fires was the recent engulfing of the small town of Lytton in the interior of British Columbia. Lytton made headlines in media around the world last Tuesday, as the city’s thermometers reached 49.6 degrees, a new all-time high for temperatures. Canada.

After three consecutive days of temperatures between 45 and 49 betweenC, a wildfire consumed 90% of the population in minutes. It is feared the blaze could have killed at least two people in a city of about 250 people.

Today, the “heat dome” is located inside Canada, Northern parts of the provinces of Manitoba and Ontario have severe heat warnings this Saturday.

Over the past few days, the message from experts has been clear: this is just the beginning.

“The Global warming, We have proof that it is real. Unfortunately we are already living, it is not the future. It’s here, so I hope people will take the time to prepare because we’ll see it often, “said Natalie Hazel, a meteorologist with the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change. Canada, Local television station CDV.

On June 2, just before the start Heat wave, The Canadian Institute for Climate Options, an independent government-funded organization, has published a forecast study entitled “Health Costs of Climate Change”.

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That statement “The Climate change This is not only an environmental and economic threat, it is also a threat to public health. “

“Climate change – documented – exacerbates existing health imbalances and increases health care costs Canada If governments do not work together to invest in readiness and prevention.

(With information from EFE)

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