If it was to end today, the 2018 European heatwave would still live long in the memory.
Temperature records have been broken across much of the continent and many areas have experienced one of the driest May to July periods on record.
Yet far from weakening, another pulse of extremely warm air is expected to become established across the Iberian Peninsula this weekend. The heat will be so intense that it will threaten the all-time records in both Spain and Portugal.
The highest temperature reliably recorded in Spain was 47.3 degrees Celsius in Montoro, Cordoba on 13th July last year. Higher readings have been taken in the past, but these are not considered trustworthy.
The record in Portugal stands at 47.9C in Amareleja, in August 2003, although a reading of 47.4C may be a more reliable figure.
All these records are under threat on both Saturday and Sunday afternoons with forecast temperatures between 44 and 47C.
The heat, although not to the same degree, will also affect many other parts of Southern Europe over the weekend. Central and northern areas, including Scandinavia, will see temperatures reverting to ‘normal’.
Last week, analysis by the World Weather Attribution network suggested that the current European heatwave is two to five times more likely (depending on location) in the future, as a result of climate change.
SOURCE: Al Jazeera and news agencies