20 August 2020
Germany’s Green Party leader wants better heatwave plans

He told residents to get used to the high temperatures. The ongoing heat wave left one German town without water access over the weekend.

Green Party leader Robert Habeck said Monday that Germany should have better plans for future heatwaves.

He told German news agency DPA “there should be a nationwide advice hotline, risk groups should be given special attention.”

The party leader said that “cool rooms” should be in place in health care facilities and there should be “green spaces and water to cool cities” as part of an 800 million euro ($941 million) program to protect people during the high heat.

Germany is currently undergoing a heatwave, which is expected to last through most of the week, with temperatures in the mid-to-upper thirties Celsius (near 100°F). Habeck said Germans will have to get used to the heat.

“The current summer heat is not surprising,” said Habeck. “Heat waves like this will be the new normal.”

Read more: To keep cities cool, we need to green them right

Habeck said that Germany should take notes from France, which has nationwide and local plans in place when the temperature soars, especially because the heat can cause severe health problems.

“Many people suffer physically, from insomnia, from cardiovascular problems. Research goes back thousands of years, showing people dying prematurely — even here in Germany.”

Recent reports show the temperature has steadily risen in Germany, with all-time records for high temperatures for June in 2019.

German town runs out of water

The heat wave hit one town in the state of Lower Saxony especially hard. Lauenau, which is 27 kilometers (17 miles) west of the state capital, Hannover, ran out of water completely on Saturday.

The mayor, Georg Hudalla, said private water consumption spiked due to the outbreak and people staying at home due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The firefighting services had to be called in order to help residents. People were called on to preserve water.

Hudalla said the crisis was over early Monday. Lauenau has just under 4,000 residents.


Source: https://www.dw.com/en/germany-greens-heat-heatwave-plans-future-environment-climate/a-54518805

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