Heat waves killed hundreds of Israelis in a decade, government study finds
The investigation was launched after a Haaretz report revealed that 363 Israelis died during heat waves between 2012 and 2020
Hundreds of Israelis have died due to heat waves over the past decade, more than previously thought, according to a study led by the Environmental Protection Ministry and Tel Aviv University published on Tuesday.
The researchers estimated that 363 Israelis died during eight heat waves that occurred between 2012 and 2020. These were “excess deaths” – an extreme deviation from the average number of deaths in the three years prior.
The number of heat waves is increasing due to climate change. The Meteorological Service has warned that over the next three decades, most Israeli cities will see a jump in the number of days with a peak temperature of over 34 degrees Celsius (93.2 degrees Fahrenheit).
Last month was one of Israel's three warmest Aprils over the past 70 years, another sign of the country's accelerated warming trend, the Israel Meteorological Service said this month. Last year was one of the hottest in Israel since the 1950s, and the past decade was the hottest ever.