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LIMA, Peru — The chances of extremely hot summers in parts of Europe have risen tenfold this century because of man-made global warming, a study by British scientists said Monday. Average summers in Central and Mediterranean Europe have warmed far faster than the global average, adding to risks of severe heat waves, according to the study in the journal Nature Climate Change. The report, released during United Nations talks in Lima on a deal to combat global warming, said an extremely warm summer, which had been expected once every 50 years in the early 2000s, could now be anticipated every five years.
The study defined an extreme summer as one that is 1.6 degrees Celsius (2.9 Fahrenheit) above the average for 1961-90. In the last decade, average summers in Europe have warmed by 0.81 degree C, it said. The U.N.'s weather agency said last week that world temperatures this year were on track to be the hottest, or among the very warmest, on record. Study co-author Peter Stott of the British Met Office Hadley Center also led a study in 2004 that concluded man-made global warming had doubled the risks of an extreme heat wave like one that struck Europe in 2003. That hot spell killed about 70,000 people, hitting France hardest.
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