France registers more than 5000 fatalities attributed to the summer heat of 2023.


France’s health authorities announced that more than 5,000 individuals succumbed to the summer heat last year, as revealed on Thursday, February 8.

Caroline Semaille, director of France’s public health agency, emphasized the widespread impact, stating that “everyone has been affected” while presenting a comprehensive report on heat-related fatalities in the previous year.

The summer of 2023, characterized by four significant heatwaves, notably in August and September, ranked as the fourth hottest summer ever recorded in France. Additionally, 2023 marked the hottest global temperature on record.

According to France’s public health agency, 5,167 deaths, accounting for three out of every 100 fatalities, were linked to heat during the summer. Of these fatalities, approximately 3,700 were individuals aged over 75. The intense heat has strained healthcare systems, disproportionately affecting older adults, infants, and children.

Comparatively, nearly 7,000 deaths were attributed to heat in 2022, potentially influenced by the concurrent coronavirus pandemic.

Following the disastrous summer of 2003, where an estimated 15,000 people perished, France implemented stringent heatwave protocols.

With Paris set to host the Olympic Games from July 26 to August 11, experts caution that an exceptionally hot summer could pose logistical challenges for organizers.

Scientists continue to underscore the existential threat posed by climate change, citing increasingly severe weather events as evidence of its escalating impact on life on Earth.

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