Europe wilts under early heat wave from Med to North Sea

A blanket of hot air stretching from the Mediterranean to the North Sea is giving much of western Europe its first heat wave of the summer, with temperatures forecast to top 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit) from Malaga to London on Friday. Some areas are expected to see the mercury pass 40C (104F).

Germany’s national weather service DWD predicted that the big sweat would continue over the weekend, as the heat moves eastward into central and eastern Europe.

The heat follows an unusually dry spring that’s resulted in authorities ordering water to be rationed in northern Italy and parts of France.

Experts say that climate change is already affecting rainfall patterns and evaporation rates across the region, with knock-on effects for agriculture, industry and wildlife.

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