Every year we experience higher and higher temperatures as carbon emissions keep increasing all over the world. The cryptocurrency boom has further aggravated the situation. Bitcoin mining alone pushed China to the top of the list of the world’s most carbon emitters, one of the reasons why China is cracking down on mining operations really hard.
It seems that the condition was really dire especially for this small town in Canada. Lytton, British Columbia was a small village of approximately 250 people before it burned to the ground. The village had previously recorded a record temperature of 49.6 degrees celsius. The highest ever recorded in Canada. The town burned down in the same week as when the temperature was reported.
Last week, a fire burned 90% of Lytton down to the ground. According to the mayor of Lytton, Jan Polderman “[I was] lucky to get out with my own life. There won’t be very much left of Lytton. There was fire everywhere”. Initially, experts pinned the cause of the fire on the ever-increasing global warming which is causing similar heatwaves across North America. However, further investigations have indicated that the fire could have been human-caused. The exact cause has not been determined at the moment.
British Columbia recorded 486 deaths over 5 days during the heatwave as reported by BBC. Lisa Lapointe, Chief Coroner, blamed the extreme weather for the deaths that happened. Many of those who died were living alone in unventilated homes. Pinning the cause of death solely on the weather is a bit of a stretch but you can’t argue that weather isn’t a factor.
The fire in Lytton happened on Wednesday, causing the people living there to run for their lives, leaving their homes and precious belongings behind. According to the Mayor, “Within about 15 minutes the whole town was engulfed in flame. People basically just grabbed their pets, grabbed their keys and got into their car and fled”. Jean McKay had to flee with her 22-year-old daughter Deirdre.
She said that “I cried. My daughter cried. She said, ‘I don’t even know why I grabbed my key. We might not even have a home.’ I said, ‘Yeah I know. As long as we’re together we’ll survive.’ I just pray that our houses are OK”.