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Australia sizzles in 50.7 ° C heat – highest temperature in 62 years

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SINGAPORE – Another day, another heat record.

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Australian authorities warned people to stay indoors on Friday as a severe heat wave along the northwest coast pushed temperatures to 50.7 degrees Celsius, reaching an all-time high 62 years ago year.

Climatologists and activists have sounded the alarm bells that global warming from human-made greenhouse gas emissions, especially from fossil fuels, is about to get out of hand.

The hottest years on record on the planet have all been in the past decade, with 2021 being the sixth warmest year for the United States’ National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration this week.

An iron ore mining region in northwest Australia, Pilbara, where temperatures hit a record high on Thursday, is known for its hot and dry conditions, with temperatures typically hovering in the 30s around this time. of the year.

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Australia is one of the largest per capita carbon emitters in the world, but the government has refused to give up its reliance on coal and other fossil fuel industries, saying it will cost jobs.

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Scientists have found that rising temperatures can affect public health and the productivity of work outdoors, causing billions of dollars in economic losses.

Australia has lost an average of A $ 10.3 billion ($ 9.37 billion) and 218 productive hours each year over the past two decades due to the heat, according to a global study released this week by researchers from Duke University. These losses will only worsen over the next few decades as the world moves towards global warming 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial times, they warned.

“These results imply that we don’t have to wait 1.5 ° C of global warming to feel the impacts of climate change on work and the economy… Further future warming amplifies these impacts,” said lead author Luke Parsons.