How much heat can Paris withstand?, Source: Depositphotos

“Paris at 50°C”: a unique resilience exercise will take place this Friday the 13th

“Paris at 50°C”: a unique resilience exercise will take place this Friday the 13th

A role-playing game, which will put to the front the worrying climate future that we’re facing

This Friday, 13 October, will be National Resilience Day in France. This year, the City of Paris is planning to mark it with a special awareness-raising event – a simulation exercise called “Paris at 50°C”.

Between 50 and 60 volunteer residents will participate in the role-playing exercise, which will unfold under the pretence that it’s 25 June 2032 and the temperature in the city has reached the deadly 50 degrees Celsius.

The role-playing game will involve students, residents, police, firefighters, energy suppliers and landlords. The assumption is that hitting such a drastic temperature will bring about crisis mode in the city as many incidents are expected to occur in such a situation.

A first-in-the-world exercise of this type

Among the critical incidents that will likely take place, participants can expect things like a possible power outage due to the massive use of air conditioners, the impossibility of transporting medicines or carrying out repairs on-site to protect the health of staff, and the urgency of sheltering a whole bunch of fragile people in cool places.

Serge Boulanger, secretary general of the Paris Defense and Security Zone, explains, as quoted by 20Minutes: “2032 is tomorrow. Every week, we comment on record temperatures in the media. We are hugely behind the Nordic countries where almost all citizens are trained in first aid.”

With the unusually balmy temperatures this October, expected to reach 28 degrees on the day of the exercise, it might be hard to imagine the heatwave but at the same time, it won’t be hard to imagine that something’s afoot with the climate.

The organizers have also promised that there will be unforeseen events on the day of the exercise, which is scheduled to take place in the 13th and 19th arrondissements. The results of the exercise will allow the authorities to develop a new resilience strategy to be presented in 2024.



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