The heat wave sweeping Europe, that is already claiming lives, is a direct consequence of climate change, according to leading European scientists. “We are observing and suffering the first effects of global warming,” says Hervé Le Treut, a meteorologist at the French Centre for Scientific Research.“The emissions of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide, are leading to higher temperatures all over the world, but these are observed in an irregular manner across the continents”, he said. “The global weather is clearly disturbed.”

Experts are predicting hotter and hotter summers. “On average, the temperature in Europe has grown about one degree since 1900, resulting in a climatic shift,” argues Serge Planton, director of the Centre for Weather Research at Toulouse in France.

So people are dying, the crops are wilting, we are using more power to keep cool. The weather was summed up by the Spanish newspaper El Semanal which said “Europa achicharrada”, meaning “Europe burned to a crisp”.