GENEVA: The World Meteorological Organisation confirmed on Tuesday that continental Europe recorded in 2021 its highest ever temperature of 48.8 degrees Celsius (119.8 Fahrenheit), and warned that new extremes were expected.

“An international panel of atmospheric scientists verified the temperature recorded by an automated weather station in Syracuse on the Italian island of Sicilia (Sicily),” the United Nations’ weather agency said.

The searing heat on August 11, 2021, was nearly one degree Celsius higher than the previous record peak of 48C registered on July 10, 1977 in the Greek cities of Athens and Elefsina, it said.

‘Heatwave-like weather’ likely to prevail

“It is possible, indeed likely, that greater extremes will occur across Europe in the future,” said Professor Randall Cerveny, rapporteur on climate and weather extremes for the WMO.

“This investigation demonstrates the alarming tendency for continuing high temperature records to be set in specific regions of the world.”

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