It’s not your imagination, summers are getting hotter

Summer UN 2018

G. Küppers (JordiCubero) Photo: G. Küppers (JordiCubero)

This article is brought to you thanks to the strategic cooperation of The European Sting with the World Economic Forum.

Author: Johnny Wood

Summers never used to be this hot, did they? You may have asked yourself that question and wondered whether in fact you’re just getting more sensitive to the heat as you get older. But in fact, Summers are getting hotter and we’re all feeling the effects.

The rising sun

The US National Centers for Environmental Information sets ‘normal’ temperatures – currently based on 1981–2010 figures – by working out average daily maximum and minimum temperatures for each area.

Climate Central, a US-based climate change research organization, analysed past temperature records for June, July and August across the United States and compared the number of recorded days above normal maximum temperature in 1970 with the same records for 2017, and found a dramatic increase in temperature in both rural and urban locations.

The analysis showed a rise in above-average temperature days and a drop in below-average temperature days across most of the country. That suggests that the average itself is rising.

Image: Climate Central

Of the 244 areas the study looked at, 92% experienced an increase in the number of above-normal temperature days, compared to 1970 figures. The biggest jumps were recorded in Texas, Louisiana and Florida.

Cities like Austin, Texas, experienced over 60 days above normal heat in 2017, compared with below 30 days in 1970. The same trend was seen in New Orleans, Louisiana, with the average virtually doubling from just over 30 days in 1970 to over 60 in recent years. In Miami, Florida, the figure jumped even more dramatically, from under 20 days half a century ago to just under 60 in 2017.

Too much of a good thing

Although holidaymakers and the US tourism industry might welcome a few additional warm summer days, extreme sun and periods of prolonged heat can seriously impact the wellbeing of people, animals and crops.

As wetlands begin to dry, some birds and wildlife are unable to find drinking water. Parched land can also damage agricultural crops and significantly increase the prospect of wildfires.

Intense heat also increases health risks, exposing people to more incidents of heat stroke, respiratory diseases, sunburn and drowsiness. This is particularly true for vulnerable groups like the young, elderly and people with serious medical conditions.

The effects of intense sun is often greater in urban areas, too. As roads, pavements and bricks heat up, air stagnates and cities and towns turn into heat islands surrounded by cooler rural areas.

When temperatures increase so do electricity bills as people seek the cooling effect of air conditioners, which generate more harmful emissions.

So any short-term benefits that come from more warm weather are likely to be far outweighed by the long-term adverse effects.

The US definitions of ‘normal’ temperature will be updated in a couple of years using data from 1991-2020. We can expect to see ‘normal’ temperatures that are significantly higher than they are now.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

the European Sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Everyone has ‘a moral imperative’ to uphold the rights of persons with disabilities, says UN chief

Germany’s strong anti-bribery enforcement against individuals needs to be matched by comparably strong enforcement against companies

‘Step backwards’ for Bosnia’s autonomous Serb region as assembly reneges on Srebrenica genocide report

Main results of Environment Council of 09 October 2018

UN agencies call for more resettlement and end to detention of asylum seekers in Libya

UN Chief ‘strongly rejects’ Guatemala decision to expel anti-corruption body

North Korea: ‘Time to talk human rights’, says UN expert

Use “blockchain” model to cut small firms’ costs and empower citizens, urge MEPs

UN General Assembly President defends ‘landmark’ migration compact

UN chief hears ‘heartbreaking accounts’ of suffering from Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh; urges international community to ‘step up support’

Is ECB helping Germany to buy cheaply the rest of Europe?

This is how AI can help you make sense of the world

EU prepares for the worst case scenario as Turkey seems to be withdrawing from the migration deal

Love Affair with Some(one)/(thing)

Moving from commitment to action on LGBTI equality

Four ways innovation can help to beat heart disease

VAT: EU Member States still losing almost €150 billion in revenues according to new figures

Draghi keeps the euro cheap, helps debt refinancing, recapitalization of banks and growth

The remote doctor in the 21st century

UN chief hails victory of ‘political will’ in historic Republic of North Macedonia accord

A Sting Exclusive: “Youth voice must be heard in climate change negotiations!”, Bérénice Jond Board Member of European Youth Forum demands from Brussels

Fresh airstrikes kill dozens in conflict-ravaged Syria

At last Britain considers a super-soft Brexit

How Germany strives to mold ECB’s monetary policy to her interests

Costa Rica is one of the world’s happiest countries. Here’s what it does differently

Trump doesn’t only target Germany, aims to crack the entire EU

Global Citizen-Volunteer Internships

European Parliament and Eurovision sign partnership for European Elections

Margrethe Vestager, European Commissioner for Competition, in Brussels - Berlaymont, last week. (Copyright European Union, 2017 / Source: EC - Audiovisual Service / Photo: Lukasz Kobus)

Amazon, Luxembourg and Ireland hit by EU’s latest turn of the screw over competition

What we can learn from Asia’s courts of the future

At last a solid base for the European Banking Union

An alternative view of Globalization 4.0, and how to get there

The EU condemns Faroe Islands and Iceland to poverty

Trade wars won’t fix globalization. Here’s why

YouTube stars get creative at UN, to promote tolerance

GSMA head urges regulators to help Europe regain leadership

‘Bring to life’ precious moments caught on film or tape, UN agency urges on World Day

Remembering Kofi Annan

Mining the deep seabed will harm biodiversity. We need to talk about it

What Ghana can teach us about integrating refugees

Assembly of European Regions @ European Business Summit 2014: The European regions on the path to recovery

European Youth Forum on Summit on Jobs and Growth

G20 LIVE: G20 leaders reaffirm OECD’s role in ensuring strong, sustainable and inclusive growth

‘Global sisterhood’ tells perpetrators ‘time is up’ for pandemic of violence

Energy Union: EU invests a further €800 million in priority energy infrastructure

Japanese law professor elected new judge at the International Court of Justice

The horrific trend of the anti-vaccine movement in Turkey

European Commission: the LED lights of your Audi A6 shall save our planet

This is the state of the world’s health, in numbers

3 things the G20 can do to save the World Trade Organization

FROM THE FIELD: Urban Mexico moves toward better livelihoods, cleaner cities

What fighting malaria can teach us about linking purpose and business

Recession: the best argument for growth

Chronic illnesses: UN stands up to stop 41 million avoidable deaths per year

Cryptocurrency mining could become the new face of energy storage. Here’s how

Blockchain could boost global trade by $1 trillion

We need to talk about how we define responsibility online – and how we enforce it

As the Universal Declaration of Human Rights turns 70 – is it time for a new approach?

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s