As temperatures rise across the globe, Greece is bracing for a record-breaking summer heatwave. With temperatures expected to soar above 40°C (104°F) in some parts of the country, the Greek government is taking steps to ensure the safety of its citizens.
From providing free sunscreen to issuing heatwave warnings, Greece is doing its best to protect its people from the effects of the extreme heat. With the help of the public, Greece is well-prepared to tackle the upcoming heatwave and ensure the safety of its citizens.
“It is possible that we will have the hottest summer ever,” said Efthymios Lekkas, a professor of Geology and Natural Disaster Management at Athens University. “All over the world, the outlook for next summer is ominous."
"And this is underlined by the high temperatures which currently exist in Spain, and in other parts of the world.
"The Eastern Mediterranean is the most sensitive region. All of this is part of what we call the climate crisis,” he told Mega TV on Tuesday," he added.
Lekkas said there will be more intense phenomena with a longer duration. “What concerns us is the continuous increase in temperature, over time, in a decade to fifteen years. The general picture should not escape us”, he stressed.
The professor stressed: “The major problem is to preserve the surface water, but mainly the underground water."
"In Mykonos, at the moment there are thousands of boreholes, which pump as much water as they can pump, but within two years we will have waterlogging, that is, seawater will pollute the wells. This is an irreversible phenomenon.”
Greek scientists say that the rise of temperature, prolonged periods of drought, and severe flooding due to rapid rainfall make up a horror scenario for the near future.
A recent study by the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki estimates that the number of days with a temperature above 35 degrees Celsius will increase by up to 16 days a year in some areas of Greece by 2050, which, combined with negative rainfall indicators, is expected to seriously affect key Greek crops.
As Costas Lagouvardos, meteorologist and director of research at the National Observatory of Athens, points out, since 2011 the temperature in Greece has exceeded the average value of 14.2° C every year, with a record in the years 2017 and 2018 which reached 15° C.
“Two phenomena are observed in our country: one is that we have a great increase in temperature. This increase is not the same everywhere, it varies between 1 and 1.5° C. In Athens, for example, it is of the order of +1.5° C.
“The second is that while the annual amount of rain remains constant, we have a decrease in the number of days with precipitation. That is, we have fewer rainy days and when it rains, it rains a lot,” Lagouvardos said speaking at Ta Nea.
"Fewer days of rain mean longer periods of drought and at the same time a risk of flooding and problems for agriculture," he added.
Greece has experienced an average of 0.7 heatwaves per year from 1950 to 2020, but this average value has increased to 1.1 heatwaves per year from 1990 to 2020, according to a recent study.
The study published in the international scientific journal “Climate” says that there is a generally increasing trend in all characteristics of heat waves, including intensity, duration, and frequency of occurrence during the period 1950-2020.
The areas of Greece that experience at least one heat wave per year have almost doubled since 1990.
Greece is a country that is highly vulnerable to the effects of climate change. The country’s geography, its long coastline, and its reliance on agriculture and tourism make it particularly susceptible to the effects of global warming.
The rise in sea levels has also had a negative impact on Greece. Coastal erosion is becoming a major problem, with some areas of the country already seeing the coastline recede by up to 10 metres in the last decade.
This has caused significant damage to the country’s infrastructure, as well as its tourism industry.
The effects of climate change are also being felt in the country’s forests. Greece is home to some of the oldest forests in Europe, but these are now being threatened by increased temperatures and drought. This has led to an increase in forest fires, which are becoming more frequent and more destructive.
Greece is taking steps to address the effects of climate change. The government has committed to reducing its emissions and has set a target of reducing emissions by 20% by 2030. It has also introduced a number of initiatives to promote renewable energy and to reduce the country’s reliance on fossil fuels.