A team of scientists found that a strengthened change in ocean temperatures from west to east (or gradient) in the tropical Pacific during the preceding winter is the main driver of more frequent heat waves in Texas.
Residents of the Carolinas are familiar with hot summers, but in some areas excessive heat events bring a higher risk for heat-related illness—and even death. A new tool can help local communities get ahead of heat events so they can reduce risk for their residents.
PHOENIX — The southwestern U.S. is about to feel the wrath of a punishing heat wave that includes a forecast of 120 degrees (48.8 Celsius) in Phoenix — a temperature not seen in the desert city in more than 20 years.
The broiling temperatures will also be felt in Las Vegas and Southern California, creating a public health hazard. Rising temps are being closely watched by everyone from airline pilots and emergency room doctors to power grid managers and mountain cities unaccustomed to heat waves.
Even cities accustomed to dealing with 110-degree (43-Celsius) days are grappling with the new problems that arise from 120 degrees (48.8 Celsius).
Schools are letting out, Memorial Day is nearly here, and for many Americans that means the unofficial start of summer. And if it's summer, then it 's time to start paying attention to the risk of extreme heat. According to NOAA’s summer outlook, most of the United States is favored to have a hotter than average summer in 2017. Only in the Great Plains do forecasters think the chances for a cool or a normal summer are equal to the chances of a hot summer. Everywhere else—from Alaska to southern California, and from Maine to Texas—odds are tilted toward well above average warmth. The absolute highest chances for a much warmer than usual summer are in Hawaii. (see the large version of the map below for Hawaii and Alaska.
The Climate Program Office's Juli Trtanj will deliver an update on the National Integrated Heat Health Information System (NIHHIS)’s national and trans-boundary activities.
For additional information about heat health and the NIHHIS, access our briefing sheet.
P: (301) 734-1214
Hunter Jones (UCAR)
Special Projects Manager
P: (301) 734-1215
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