More than 20,000 people died from extreme heat in western Europe this summer, according to official figures, as the continent was battered by a series of punishing heatwaves and record-breaking temperatures that are likely to become more frequent and more intense in the future.


More than 20,000 deaths may have been caused by extreme heat this summer.

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The difference between the number of deaths recorded and what was expected was higher during the periods of extreme heat sweeping across western Europe this summer.

France accounted for half of the excess deaths recorded by the public health agency.

One of the three heatwaves hitting France this summer resulted in the deaths of nearly 3000 people, making it the country's second hottest on record.

The excess deaths in England and Wales between June 1 and September 7 were 6.2% higher than the five-year average.

There were more than 4,500 heat-related deaths in Germany this summer, which was the country's warmest summer on record.

According to the Carlos III Health Institute, there were 4,655 deaths in Spain due to heat in the summer.

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Europe's hottest summer on record was this year. The seven years between then and 2015 have been the hottest on record, with the average summer temperature beating the previous record. Parts of France, Britain and Spain all experienced record temperatures this summer. Climate change experts say things are likely to get worse in the future. Europe is warmer than other parts of the world. In a warmer Europe, the bloc's health agency warned, there could be more cases of diseases such as Malaria and Dengue. By the end of the century, it is estimated that up to 90k people could die in Europe due to heat.

Big Number

$17 trillion. Climate change has cost the global economy as much as $65 trillion over the past two decades, according to research. Human health, productivity and agricultural output are affected by extreme heat. As with many of the consequences of climate change, this burden is disproportionately shouldered by the world's poor, who tend to contribute less to global warming and pay more for it.

Europe's heat waves offer a bleak vision of the future.

Baby bats may have been killed by heat wave.

Climate change has cost the world 16 trillion dollars.