Comment on Iberian heatwave analysis

Record-breaking temperatures that hit western Mediterranean would have been “almost impossible” without climate change, finds analysis.

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By George Smeeton

Last updated:

Commenting on new analysis that shows that the April heatwave in Spain, Portugal, Morocco and Algeria would have been almost impossible without climate change [1], Gareth Redmond-King, Head of International Programme at the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU) said: “When Brits hear ‘record temperatures in Spain and Portugal’, we may picture sun, sand and sangria. But as we know from last summer here at home, the reality is more dangerous: 1,500 additional deaths in England, on just the two hottest days. We also import some £4bn worth of food and drink from Spain and Portugal – half of which we simply can’t grow in the UK. This includes over £400m worth of citrus fruits and juices, more than a third of the sweet peppers, and a quarter of the tomatoes we import. Not to mention more than £350m in wines and port.

“Extreme heat and drought threaten most crops. With droughts already baked in for Europe after a dry winter, and an expected El Niño event this year, these temperatures look set to intensify. More record heat and more threats to our food supplies all round the world set the stage for a worrying summer.”


Notes to editors:

  1. World Weather Attribution: Extreme April heat in Spain, Portugal, Morocco & Algeria almost impossible without climate change:

For more information:

George Smeeton, Head of Communications, ECIU, Tel: 07894 571 153, email: