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In Photos: Deadly Heat Waves Scorch Europe, the Middle East, and Asia

Around the world, high temperatures have killed dozens, sent thousands to the hospital, and led to angry protests calling for stable electricity supplies.

by VICE News
Aug 17 2015, 5:35pm

Imagen vía EPA

VICE News is closely tracking global environmental change. Check out the Tipping Point blog here.

Coming off its hottest year ever and fueled by a "Godzilla" El Niño, Planet Earth keeps getting hotter and hotter, with NASA reporting that last month was the hottest July on record. 

Around the globe last month, and continuing into early August, high temperatures led to deaths and hospitalizations, brought electric generation to a halt, and sent angry protesters into the streets demanding relief.  

Germany tied its all time temperature record of 104.5 degrees the first week of August, according to Weather Underground, and Berlin hit 102 degrees, its highest temperature ever. Poland was forced to cut power for the first time since the 1980s and the city of Wroclaw set an all-time high temperature of 102 degrees on August 8th.

People relaxing on the beach on the Baltic Sea in Sopot, Poland, where temperatures are as much as 25 degrees above average. (Photo by Piotr Wittman/EPA) 

A woman fans herself  as temperatures reached 100 degrees Fahrenheit in Florence, Italy. (Photo by Maurizio Degl'lnnocent/EPA)

 People crowd the Badeschiff, or bathing ship, on the river Spree in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Britta Pedersen/EPA)

Nearly 100 people died in Egypt, as temperatures topped 114 degrees, according to the Associated Press

The Iraqi government declared in mid-July an official holiday as the mercury topped 120 degrees in Baghdad. Thousands of protesters took to Tahrir Square in Baghdad to protest a lack of electricity a few weeks later. 

In late late July, a "heat dome" settled over Iran and the heat index skyrocketed to 165 degrees, the second hottest heat index ever recorded, according to the Washington Post

An Iraqi man cools off under a public shower in the southern Iraqi city of Basra. (Photo by Haider Al Assadee/EPA)

Iraqis swim near Basra's port in order to cool themselves off. (Photo by Haider Al Assadee/EPA)

Fifty-five people died in Japan last month from the heat, according to government data, and Tokyo sweated through eight straight days of 95 degree weather, double the previous number of extremely hot days.

Temperatures in South Korea hit an all-time high the first week of August with dozens of dozens of deaths reported. A 2012 study published in Environmental Health Perspectives found that mortality in South Korea rose over 4 percent during extreme heat waves. 

Young women gather at a water vaporizer to cool down as temperatures neared 100 degrees Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Franck Robichon/EPA) 

The air simmers over a road in the city of Chuncheon, northeast of Seoul, South Korea. (Photo via EPA)

Attributing specific extreme weather to climate change remains a challenge, but the science to do so is getting better and better. In July, a team of international scientists brought together by Climate Central concluded that "it is virtually certain" that the heat wave that struck Europe in early July was more likely now due to climate change.

"Climate change is already making heat waves more frequent, more intense and longer-lasting," Heidi Cullen, chief scientist at Climate Central, told VICE News. "If we do nothing to reduce emissions, extreme summer heat will become the new normal."

Tagged:
Europe
environment
VICE News
Electricity
GLOBAL WARMING
climate change
asia & pacific
The Middle East
Extreme weather
heat waves
heat stroke