Life at 50°C: Middle East

The Middle East is heating up at twice the global average.

Life at 50°C: Middle East Kuwait now regularly sees temperatures above 50°C. Its economy is dominated by fossil fuel exports but as the temperature rises, more and more of Kuwait is becoming desert and it becomes harder to live with the extreme heat. With the mercury topping 53°C, three Kuwaiti citizens - an influencer, a weather forecaster and a retired civil servant - raise the alarm with concerns about “how much longer we can consider Kuwait habitable”. They urge that Kuwait must not be allowed to get any hotter - and one of them has a solution to offer. Iraq is one of the most climate-vulnerable places on Earth. This summer, Sheikh Kezem Al-Kaabi fights to continue farming his ancestral land despite extreme heat and worsening water shortages. In Baghdad, traffic cop Sa’ad Saddam Abdulhasan is responsible for one of the city’s busiest intersections. He keeps the city moving, but that means working in 50C heat.

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