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Record Heat, Floods: For Greece, 2023 Was Record Bad Weather Year

ATHENS – Greeks will likely long remember 2023, which brought record tourism but more deadly wildfires, followed by floods that wiped out a big chunk of the country’s agricultural heartland, breaking nine weather records.

That was according to Climatebook.gr that showed the year was the hottest and driest in the last 30 years, as tourism officials earlier worried the heat might drive away foreign visitors to cooler climes.

Climate change that’s mostly been addressed with window dressing resolutions by world governments even as it gets worse, was largely to blame, the government said earlier of the disasters.

Meteorologist Stavros Dafis, head of research at the National Observatory of Athens said the largest expanse of land was destroyed by fire, even more than 2007 fires in the Peloponnese that killed 85 people.

It was warm even in December, which had temperatures 4-5 degrees Celsius higher than previous years, while September – when Greece was wracked by Storm Daniel – was the wettest since 1991.

The weather veered wildly too, with February, 2023 one of the driest ever and some areas getting no precipitation during that winter month and Athens in the summer having 300 straight hours of temperatures over 86 degrees.

“Climate change played a huge role in September’s floods,” said Dafis. “All sorts of studies are already being carried out that prove as much, as do all the data which show that the high temperatures in the summer of 2023 were, to a significant degree, responsible for the huge volume of rainfall.”

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