It felt up to 62.3 degrees Celsius: Brazil, hit by a heatwave, is suffocating

It felt up to 62.3 degrees Celsius: Brazil, hit by a heatwave, is suffocating

Standard level. The heat wave that has been affecting Latin America since the beginning of the year has caused temperatures to rise to 62.3 degrees Celsius in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, this weekend, with rain threatening to rain in the south of the country.

“Avoid prolonged exposure to the sun. Hydrate yourself!”, warned Rio's municipal alert system, setting a record since the start of this type of measure in 2014. The western region of Rio is made up of poor, remote and deprived neighborhoods, where more than 40% live The population of this city is more than six million people.

With a maximum real temperature of 42 degrees Celsius on Sunday, the felt temperature rose to its highest levels even in the residential area of ​​the Botanical Garden in southern Rio, characterized by its numerous plants and where the felt temperature rose to 57.7 degrees Celsius. C Sunday. Raquel Correa (49 years old), a resident of Rio, said in a central park: “We are trying to protect ourselves, and go to a more open place, with the sea, but we have to do something.” She added: “I am very afraid that it will get worse, because the population is increasing a lot and deforestation is very large due to the increase in the number of housing units.”

Symbols of Rio, the beaches of Ipanema and Copacabana were filled with people on Sunday. Many of them have also found refuge in Tijuca Park, the city's true green lung.

Floods in the south

In southern Brazil, on the contrary, it is rain that threatens. Authorities have warned that heavy rains are expected to continue this week. “The week will be at high risk of heavy rains and thunderstorms in south-central Brazil,” weather information agency MetSul warned on Sunday. “The most concerning system is a very intense cold front that will arrive with heavy rain and possible storms,” she added.

Some areas in Rio Grande do Sul state are recording “exceptionally high” rainfall amounts. The city of Uruguayana, the most affected city in the state, broadcast images of flooded streets and buses half submerged in water. Up to 500mm of water could fall, according to MetSul, while in February the state of Rio Grande do Sul was choking with heat due to a “dome of extreme heat” coming from Argentina.

Experts attribute these extreme phenomena and meteorological instability to climate change and the El Niño phenomenon that affects the southern cone of Latin America in the middle of summer, causing forest fires in Chile. The current climate has warmed by about 1.2°C compared to 1850-1900, causing increased droughts, floods and heat waves.

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