Climate change made Houston's summer hotter
Texas' record-breaking heat this summer would have been "virtually impossible without human-caused climate change," per recent climate analyses.
Driving the news: The Houston area experienced 63 days — 69% of the summer — with hot temperatures made three times more likely by climate change, according to a new Climate Central report.
- Since June, Houston has had 45 days with 100° weather, making this summer Houston's hottest and besting 2011's record, per Space City Weather's Matt Lanza.
Zoom out: Houston was one of 17 Texas cities that experienced hot temperatures made at least twice as likely by climate change.
How it works: Climate Central's analysis is based on the group's Climate Shift Index (CSI), which compares observed or forecast temperatures with simulations of the same weather conditions minus excess atmospheric greenhouse gasses.
- A CSI of 3, for example, means human-caused climate change made a daily average temperature three times more likely.
Of note: While the analysis itself wasn't peer reviewed, the methodology has been.
The big picture: In 45 of the 244 U.S. cities the group analyzed, at least half of all summer days had temperatures made at least twice as likely by climate change.
- Victoria, southeast of San Antonio, had the second-most hot summer days driven by climate change, with 80 days made twice as likely by climate change.
- San Juan, Puerto Rico, had the most with 90.
Meanwhile: As Axios' Andrew Freedman has reported, Earth just experienced what was likely its hottest summer on record.
The bottom line: Rapid-attribution analyses like this one drive home a key point: Climate change is having a significant present-day impact on millions across the country and the planet.
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