Environment Canada issues heat warning for Metro Vancouver and other parts of southwestern B.C.

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      It's going to be a scorching week across the Lower Mainland and the Fraser Valley.

      This morning Environment Canada issued a special weather statement warning of an "extended stretch of hot weather".

      Temperatures are expected to reach the mid to upper 30s by midweek in the Fraser Valley, the Howe Sound-Whister area, and on inland Vancouver Island.

      It will be a few degrees lower in areas closer to Georgia Strait and Juan de Fuca Strait.

      "Daily temperatures records from Tuesday to Thursday will probably be broken in many communities," Environment Canada says in the statement. "And the all time records for the month of August may be threatened, too." 

      Prolonged hot weather can elevate the risk of heat-related illness, according to Environment Canada, and everybody is at risk.

      The alert recommends drinking plenty of water even before feeling thirsty. It also advised people to remain in cool places.

      "Those most vulnerable to high temperatures include young children, pregnant women, the elderly, those working or exercising in the heat, persons with chronic illnesses, people living alone in un-air-conditioned homes, and the homeless," the statement adds.

      It goes without saying that pets and children should not be left inside parked vehicles.

      Planet is getting hotter

      Environment Canada's statement makes no mention of climate change but rising greenhouse gas emissions caused by human activity have been associated with rising average global temperatures for decades.

      The surface temperatures of Earth in 2016 were the warmest since records began being kept in the 1880s, according to NASA.

      Eight of the 12 months last year set records.

      It was also the third consecutive year of record-breaking average temperatures.

      The global average last year was 0.99 degrees Celsius warmer than the mean temperate in the middle of the 20th century.

      Sixteen of the 17 warmest years on record have occurred since 2001, according to NASA.