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‘Heavy to extreme’: Mild heatwave to settle across Israel starting Saturday

Temperatures across the country are expected to drop slightly by Wednesday

Israelis enjoy the beach in Tel Aviv on a hot summer day. August 11, 2021. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)
Israelis enjoy the beach in Tel Aviv on a hot summer day. August 11, 2021. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Another heatwave, though milder than the previous one, is set to settle across Israel on Saturday with temperatures remaining slightly higher than the seasonal average in most areas across the country over the next few days.

“Heavy to extreme heat” will prevail in most regions, according to a forecast by the Israel Meteorological Service, and it will be muggy along the Mediterranean coast.

Temperatures in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv were expected to reach highs of 31° Celsius (87.8°F) on Saturday and through Tuesday, while the forecast for Haifa was 30° Celsius (86.0°F) with an expected drop to 28°C (82.4°F) by Tuesday. Tiberias is expected to be scorching with highs of 38°C (100.4°F) for the next four days, with the southern city of Beersheba reaching highs of 35°C (95°F) and Eilat topping the charts at highs of 40-41°C (104-107.6°F), according to the Israel Meteorological Service. The areas around the Dead Sea are also expected to be sizzling, with Ein Gedi temperatures at 38-39°C (100.4-102.2°F)

The Mediterranean Sea was predicted to be at a balmy 31 degrees, with mild waves of between 20-40 centimeters (7.8-15.7 inches).

Temperatures across the country are expected to drop slightly in daytime hours starting on Wednesday. The evenings will remain generally cool in the coastal plains, according to the forecast.

Last week saw a serious, prolonged heatwave across the country, with temperatures topping 35°C (95°F) in many areas and hitting highs of 39°C (102°F) in Beersheba and Tiberias, and 43°C (106°F) in Eilat.

The heat was characterized “by low humidity during the day in the lowlands and the interior part of the coastal plain for about 6 to 7 consecutive days, is an unprecedented event for the summer season,” the Israel Meteorological Service said.

Israelis at the beach in Tel Aviv, June 29, 2021. (Miriam Alster/FLASH90)

At the height of the heatwave last week, the Health Ministry urged Israelis, particularly the elderly and those with chronic conditions, to avoid excessive sun exposure and to drink large quantities of water. Its health advisory also noted that face masks to protect against COVID-19 were not required outdoors.

There were no immediate reports for additional instructions or warnings for the current heatwave.

Israel, like much of the world, has been experiencing more days with higher temperatures and the scorchers are becoming the norm.

A man refreshes himself in a fountain during a hot summer day in Messina, on August 11, 2021. (Giovanni ISOLINO / AFP)

July 2021 was the hottest month globally ever recorded, according to a US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) report Friday, in the latest data to underline the climate crisis.

Last week, a landmark UN climate science report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued a stark “code red for humanity” by saying the world is on course to reach 1.5C of warming around 2030.

The 3,000-plus-page report from 234 scientists said warming is already accelerating sea-level rise, shrinking ice and worsening extremes such as heatwaves, droughts, floods and storms. Tropical cyclones are getting stronger and wetter, while Arctic sea ice is dwindling in the summer and permafrost is thawing. All of these trends will get worse, the report said.

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