Apr 30, 2024 - News

A long, hot summer looms

map showing predicted temperatures

Map showing the likelihood of above-, average, and below-average temperatures across the U.S. during June, July and August 2024. Photo: NOAA/CPC

Another hotter-than-usual summer is in store for Texas, per federal forecasters.

Why it matters: Extreme heat is a major public health threat and plays a role in droughts and wildfires.

Threat level: The ways climate change is altering the character of American summers increasingly stand out.

What they're saying: Extremely hot days were "rare in the 1970s and commonplace now," Peter Girard, a spokesperson for Climate Central, a nonprofit science and communications organization, tells Axios.

The intrigue: One wild card this summer will be exactly where persistent areas of high pressure, also known as heat domes, set up. That will determine the areas that see some of the hottest conditions.

Flashback: 2023 was the hottest meteorological summer on record at the airport, with records dating back to 1942 — and fell just behind 2011 as the hottest on record at Camp Mabry.

  • Though records there extend back to 1897, all of Austin's 10 hottest summers on record have come since 1998, per KXAN.

The bottom line: The 1970s were a way cooler time to live in Austin.

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