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More than 111 million people in the U.S. face extreme heat

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on The New York Times or enjoy below

🗞️ Driving the news: Excessive heat warnings and advisories have been issued across the American South and Southwest, with more than 57 million people affected by the most severe heat conditions 
• Record-breaking temperatures are sweeping through the Gulf Coast and parts of the Southwest, persisting for several days

🔭 The context: The heatwave, spanning from Southern Illinois to the Gulf Coast, has seen cities like St. Louis endure over a week with heat indexes surpassing 100 degrees
• This index, considering humidity, indicates the perceived temperature, which can differ from actual readings

🌎 Why does it matter for the planet: Punishing heat conditions, especially in the South, have become more frequent, exacerbated by high humidity and minimal rainfall
• While individual weather events can be challenging to attribute directly to climate change, there's consensus that global heatwaves are becoming more intense, frequent, and prolonged

⏭️ What's next: The intense heat is predicted to persist into early next week
• Cities like Dallas, Fort Worth, and New Orleans are experiencing temperatures that could break longstanding records
• Residents are urged to be cautious, given the serious health risks associated with extreme heat

💬 One quote: “The heat index in the New Orleans region is also expected to reach oppressive levels on Saturday, hitting 118 degrees in Covington and 115 in Baton Rouge and New Orleans” (National Weather Service Fort Worth)

📈 One stat: The 2018 National Climate Assessment reported that the frequency of heatwaves in the United States had increased to six annually in the 2010s, up from an average of two yearly in the 1960s
• Moreover, the heatwave season is now 45 days longer than in the 1960s

Click for more news covering the latest on climate change

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