Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Heat waves in 21th century

In early August 2001 an intense heatwave hit the eastern seaboard of the United States and neighboring southeastern Canada. For over a week, temperatures climbed above 35 °C (95 °F) combined with stifling high humidity. Newark, New Jersey tied its all-time record high temperature of 41 °C (106 °F) with a heat index of over 50 °C (122 °F).
In April 2002 a summer-like heat wave in spring affected much of the Eastern United States.
Nearly 35,000 people died in the European heat wave of 2003. Much of the heat was concentrated in France, where nearly 15,000 people died. In Portugal, the temperatures reached as high as 48 °C (118 °F) in the south.
The European heat wave of 2006 was the second massive heat wave to hit the continent in four years, with temperatures rising to 40 °C (104 °F) in Paris; in Ireland, which has a moderate maritime climate, temperatures of over 32 °C (90 °F) were reported. Temperatures of 35 °C (95 °F) were reached in the Benelux and Germany (in some areas 38 °C (100 °F), while Great Britain recorded 37 °C (99 °F). Many heat records were broken (including the hottest ever July temperature in Great Britain) and many people who experienced the heat waves of 1976 and 2003 drew comparisons with them. Highest average July temperatures were recorded at many locations in Great Britain, Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden and Germany.
The 2006 North American heat wave affected a wide area of the United States and parts of neighboring Canada during July and August 2006. Over 220 deaths were reported. Temperatures in some parts of South Dakota exceeded 115 °F (46 °C). Also, California experienced temperatures that were extraordinarily high, with records ranging from 100 to 130 °F (38 to 54 °C). On July 22, the County of Los Angeles recorded its highest temperature ever at 119 °F (48 °C). Humidity levels in California were also unusually high, although low compared with normal gulf coast/eastern seaboard summer humidity they were significant enough to cause widespread discomfort.
The European heat wave of 2007 affected primarily south-eastern Europe during late June through August. Bulgaria experienced its hottest year on record, with previously unrecorded temperatures above 45 °C (113 °F). The 2007 Greek forest fires were associated with the heat wave.
During the 2007 Asian heat wave, the Indian city of Datia experienced temperatures of 48 °C (118 °F).
In January 2008, Alice Springs in Australia's Northern Territory recorded ten consecutive days of temperatures above 40 °C (104 °F) with the average temperature for that month being 39.8 °C (103.6 °F). In March 2008, Adelaide, South Australia experienced maximum temperatures of above 35 °C (95 °F) for fifteen consecutive days, seven days more than the previous longest stretch of 35 °C (95 °F) days. The March 2008 heat wave also included eleven consecutive days above 38 °C (100 °F). The heat wave was especially notable because it occurred in March, an autumn month, in which Adelaide averages only 2.3 days above 35 °C (95 °F).
The eastern United States experienced an early Summer heat wave from June 6–10, 2008 with record temperatures. There was a heat wave in Southern California beginning late June, which contributed to widespread fires. On July 6, a renewed heat wave was forecast, which was expected to affect the entire state.
In early 2009, Adelaide, South Australia was hit by a heat wave with temperatures reaching 40+ °C for six days in a row, while many rural areas experienced temperatures hovering around about mid 40s °C (mid 110s°F). Kyancutta on the Eyre Peninsula endured at least one day at 48 °C, with 46 and 47 being common in the hottest parts of the state. Melbourne, in neighbouring Victoria recorded 3 consecutive days over 43 °C (109 °F), and also recorded its highest ever temperature 8 days later in a secondary heatwave, with the mercury peaking at 46.4 °C (115.5 °F). During this heat wave Victoria suffered from large bushfires which claimed the lives of more than 210 people and destroyed more than 2,500 homes. There were also over half a million people without power as the heatwave blew transformers and the power grid was overloaded.
In August 2009, Argentina experienced a period of unusual and exceptionally hot weather during August 24–30, during the Southern Hemisphere winter, just a month before Spring, when an unusual and unrecorded winter heat wave hit the country. A shot of tropical heat drawn unusually far southward hiked temperatures 22 degrees above normal in the city of Buenos Aires and across the northern-centre regions of the country. Several records were broken. Even though normal high temperatures for late August are in the lower 15 °C (59 °F), readings topped 30 °C (86 °F) degrees at midweek, then topped out above 32 °C (90 °F) degrees during the weekend. Temperatures hit 33.8 °C (92.8 °F) on 29 August and finally 34.6 °C (94.3 °F) on 30 August in Buenos Aires, making it the hottest day ever recorded in winter breaking the 1996 winter record of 33.7 °C (92.7 °F). In the city of Santa Fe, 38.3 °C (100.9 °F) degrees on 30 August was registered, notwithstanding the normal high in the upper 15 °C/60°Fs. As per the Meteorological Office of Argentina, August 2009 has been the warmest month during winter since official measurements began.
The Northern Hemisphere summer heat wave of 2010 affected many areas across the Northern Hemisphere, especially parts of Northeastern China and Southeastern Russia.
In June 2010, Eastern Europe experienced very warm conditions. Ruse, Bulgaria hit 36.6 °C (97.9 °F) on the 13th making it the warmest spot in Europe. Other records broken on the 13th include Vidin, Bulgaria at 35.8 °C (96.4 °F), Sandanski, Bulgaria hitting 35.5 °C (95.9 °F), Lovech and Pazardzhik, Bulgaria at 35.1 °C (95.2 °F) as well as the capital, Sofia, hitting 33.3 °C (91.9 °F). The heat came from the Sahara desert and was not associated with rain. This helped the situation with high water levels in that part of the continent.[39] On the 14th, several cities were once again above the 35 °C (95 °F) mark even though they didn't break records. The only cities in Bulgaria breaking records were Musala peak hitting 15.2 °C (59.4 °F) and Elhovo hitting 35.6 °C (96.1 °F).[40] On the 15th, Ruse, Bulgaria peaked at 37.2 °C (99.0 °F). Although it was not a record, this was the highest temperature recorded in the country. Five Bulgarian cities broke records that day: Ahtopol hit 28.6 °C (83.5 °F), Dobrich was 33.8 °C (92.8 °F), Karnobat hit 34 °C (93 °F), Sliven hit 35 °C (95 °F) and Elhovo recorded 36.1 °C (97.0 °F).
From July 4 to July 9, 2010, the majority of the American East Coast, from the Carolinas to Maine, was gripped in a severe heat wave. Philadelphia, New York, Baltimore, Washington, Raleigh, and even Boston eclipsed 100 °F (38 °C). Many records were broken, some of which dated back to the 1800s, including Wilmington, Delaware's temperature of 103 °F (39 °C) on Wednesday, July 7, which broke the record of 97 °F (36 °C) from 1897. Philadelphia and New York eclipsed 100 °F (38 °C) for the first time since 2001. Fredrick, Maryland, and Newark, New Jersey, among others topped the century mark (37.8 Celsius) for four days in a row.
The UK declared a heatwave, MetOffice Level 2/4, on 9 July 2010 for South East England and East Anglia. This was after temperatures reached 31.0 degrees Celsius in London and night-time temperatures levelled around 21 degrees Celsius.
In the Japanese heat wave of 2010 which began on July 16, temperatures reaching as high as 35.0 °C (95.0 °F) were reported in many Japanese cities, for 33 days in Kyoto, 29 days in Tottori and 25 days in Osaka. According to a Japan Meteorological Agency report, some of these cities recorded the highest temperature in September since 1868, reaching 39.9 °C (103.8 °F) in Kyotanabe, Kyoto, 39.1 °C (102.4 °F) in Gujo, Gifu, and higher than 30.0 °C (86.0 °F) in 653 cities and 35.0 °C (95.0 °F) in 128 cities during September 4 and 5, 2010.
An ongoing heat wave is hitting Southern Ontario, that began on July 16,2011. The humidex can get as high as 41, making the temperatures as high as 41°C (105.8 °F).Template:43

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