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Sheetal Sukhija - Monday 6th August, 2018

PARIS, France - The record-breaking temperatures across Europe has now forced France to temporarily shut down nuclear reactors. 

Amid scorching temperatures caused by the heatwave sweeping Europe, France is said to have been forced to temporarily shut down four nuclear reactors. 

French emergency company EDF said that it hated the country’s oldest nuclear power plant located at Fessenheim in eastern France, in order to keep the plant from overheating the nearby river.

EDF further stated that earlier this week, it had already shut down three other power plants near the Rhine and Rhone rivers for similar reasons.

A heatwave has been sweeping across much of Europe in recent weeks.

The decision by EDF came after officials warned people in Portugal and Spain to refrain from heading anywhere outside, as parts of the region reached record-setting high temperatures. 

Further, meteorologists had even predicted that some areas could beat the highest temperature ever recorded in Europe – 48C, recorded in Athens, Greece, in July 1977.

The power plants in France use water from the rivers to cool down their reactors, before sending the water back into the rivers. 

However, overheated waters can result in mass fish die-offs.

Similar instances were reported in Germany this week.

The temporary shut down of the French power plants is just one of the latest inconvenience caused by the heatwave. 

On Saturday, Spain and Portugal witnessed an exceptionally hot day.

Three people had died in Spain, reportedly due to heatstroke, even as the heatwave continued to threaten to raise temperatures to record levels.

Meanwhile, in Portugal, large areas continued to remain on red alert for heat, including the capital, Lisbon. 

According to the country's weather agency, IPMA, temperatures will reach 45 degrees Celsius (113 degrees Fahrenheit) in parts of the south-central Alentejo region.

Wildfires have already sprung up in Portugal’s Algarve, mirroring the deadly fires burning in Greece, Sweden, and the U.S. west coast.

Further, a drought is sweeping through Switzerland, which has left herds of cows stranded without water. 

Switzerland’s helicopter association and Air Force have been called to transport tens of thousands of gallons of water every week to sustain them.

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