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WEATHER

Weather: Storms and heavy downpours expected in eastern Germany

The German Weather Service (DWD) has issued a weather warning for the east of the country for Monday, as a low pressure front creeps in from Scandinavia.

Weather: Storms and heavy downpours expected in eastern Germany
Cyclists in the Harz Mountains on Sunday, which also saw stormy weather. Photo: DPA

The DWD’s warning sounds ominous. “A torrent of cool sea air is streaming into Germany behind a cold deep pressure front,” it says in its weather report.

Throughout Monday this unstable air could lead to heavy rain, hail, and stormy gusts of wind in the eastern regions of the country.

“We can’t rule out hail of up to 2 cm in diameter, torrential rain and gusts of wind, particularly on the Polish border,” the warning continues.

The situation is expected to stabilize towards the evening.

In the north and east of the country temperatures are not expected to rise above 24 degrees Celsius.

The south of Germany is in for a much hotter day, with temperatures rising to 32C in some spots.

Thunder, lightening and short deluges can be expected in the Alpine region of Bavarian later in the afternoon.

Graphic showing the weather around Germany, Wednesday-Friday. Credit: DWD

Later in the week the situation is set to calm down across much of the country, with pleasant summer temperatures in the mid-20s predicted across much of central and southern Germany.

In the north, highs of 20-22C will be the norm over the coming days.

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WILDFIRES

Europe facing record year for wildfire destruction: EU

Europe's blistering summer may not be over yet, but 2022 is already breaking records, with nearly 660,000 hectares ravaged since January, according to the EU's satellite monitoring service.

Europe facing record year for wildfire destruction: EU

And while countries on the Mediterranean have normally been the main seats of fires in Europe, this year, other countries are also suffering heavily.

Fires this year have forced people to flee their homes, destroyed buildings and burned forests in EU countries, including Austria, Croatia, France, Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain.

Some 659,541 hectares (1.6 million acres) have been destroyed so far, data from the European Forest Fire Information System (EFFIS) showed, setting a record at this point in the year since data collection began in 2006.

Europe has suffered a series of heatwaves, forest fires and historic drought that experts say are being driven by human-induced climate change.

They warn more frequent and longer heatwaves are on the way.

The worst-affected country has been Spain, where fire has destroyed 244,924 hectares, according to EFFIS data.

The EFFIS uses satellite data from the EU’s Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS).

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: How the climate crisis is hitting Europe hard

The data comes after CAMS said Friday that 2022 was a record year for wildfire activity in southwestern Europe and warned that a large proportion of western Europe was now in “extreme fire danger”.

“2022 is already a record year, just below 2017,” EFFIS coordinator Jesus San-Miguel said. In 2017, 420,913 hectares had burned by August 13, rising to 988,087 hectares by the end of the year.

“The situation in terms of drought and extremely high temperatures has affected all of Europe this year and the overall situation in the region is worrying, while we are still in the middle of the fire season,” he said.

Since 2010, there had been a trend towards more fires in central and northern Europe, with fires in countries that “normally do not experience fires in their territory”, he added.

“The overall fire season in the EU is really driven mainly by countries in the Mediterranean region, except in years like this one, in which fires also happen in central and northern regions,” he added.

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