Artic Ice Thinning; Reindeer Seeking Shelter

“One of Norway’s hottest summers on record has caused overheated reindeer to take refuge in a highway tunnel located in the far north of the country.” from Earthweek

“…measurements show the snowpack has thinned from 14 inches to 9 inches in the western Arctic and from 13 inches to 6 inches in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas, north and west of Alaska.”  from Earthweek

It’s Hot in Phoenix, And Getting Hotter

“Phoenix is already hot, and it’s getting hotter,” Mayor of Phoenix Greg Stanton said at panel held at the Center For American Progress (CAP) today. “We’ve had more extreme heat and longer periods of heat — each year it seems like we get a report that it was the hottest summer on record.”

Stanton speaks the truth. The city averages more than 100 days a year with temperatures reaching over 100 degrees. In 2013, 115 days hit 100 degrees. In 2011, the city set a new record for days over 110 degrees with 33. That’s over one month of the year with scorching highs. This winter has so far been warmer than average.

Stanton is in D.C. with other mayors, including Ed Lee of San Francisco at the Conference of Mayors hoping to get direct conversations with President Obama — since the elected houses of congress have been unable to get a grip on the disasters facing the country/world.

See Climate Progress for longer, useful summary.

The Great Russian Heat Wave Continues

The mid-term and long-term effects of climate change are looking like they’ve become short-term this summer. Burning in Russia. Drowning in Pakistan. The alarms are being rung around the world but those whose response would matter most are not able to budge themselves to yawn.

* * *

“One of the most remarkable weather events of my lifetime is unfolding this summer in Russia, where an unprecedented heat wave has brought another day of 102°F heat to the nation’s capital. At 3:30 pm local time today, the mercury hit 39°C (102.2°F) at Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport. Moscow had never recorded a temperature exceeding 100°F prior to this year, and today marks the second time the city has beaten the 100°F mark. The first time was on July 29, when the Moscow observatory recorded 100.8°C and Baltschug, another official downtown Moscow weather site, hit an astonishing 102.2°F (39.0°C). Prior to this year, the hottest temperature in Moscow’s history was 37.2°C (99°F), set in August 1920. The Moscow Observatory has now matched or exceeded this 1920 all-time record five times in the past eleven days, including today. The 2010 average July temperature in Moscow was 7.8°C (14°F) above normal, smashing the previous record for hottest July, set in 1938 (5.3°C above normal.) July 2010 also set the record for most July days in excess of 30°C–twenty-two. The previous record was 13 such days, set in July 1972. The past 24 days in a row have exceeded 30°C in Moscow, and there is no relief in sight–the latest forecast for Moscow calls for high temperatures near 100°F (37.8°C) for the next seven days. It is stunning to me that the country whose famous winters stopped the armies of Napoleon and Hitler is experiencing day after day of heat near 100°F, with no end in sight. [bold by wbk]

Thousands of deaths, severe fires, and the threat of radioactive contamination Read more of this post