Aug 16, 2022 - News

Mapping what Florida's heat will look like in 30 years

Data: First Street Foundation; Map: Erin Davis/Axios Visuals

Think it's hot here now?

In 30 years, the counties along Florida's Gulf Coast, from Monroe in the south to the northern extremes of the Tampa Bay region, will experience 35% to 45% more days when the heat index temperature climbs over 100°F.

  • Sarasota County, for instance, is expected to have 79 days with heat index temperatures over 100° in 2023.
  • Yes, but: By 2053, the county can expect 112 days above 100°.

Driving the news: That's according to a new hyperlocal analysis of current and future extreme heat events by the nonprofit First Street Foundation.

  • The report examines current and future heat risks down to the property level across the country.

Why it matters: Knowing about future extreme heat zones can help communities better prepare for seasonal energy usage and protect residents who might be more susceptible to hospitalization or death at higher temperatures, according to the foundation.

The big picture: In just 30 years, climate change will cause the Lower 48 states to be a far hotter and more precarious place to be during the summer, Axios' Andrew Freedman reports.

  • The Gulf and Southeastern Atlantic regions are looking at the highest probability and longest duration of days over 100° by 2053.

The extremes: In the case of extreme heat, the analysis found 50 counties — home to 8.1 million residents — that are expected to experience heat index temperatures above 125° next year.

  • In 30 years, the report says 1,023 counties, including some of those same counties on Florida's Gulf Coast, will experience temperatures above 125° — the highest level of the National Weather Services’ heat index.

Of note: Sarasota, Manatee and Hillsborough are not expected to see a day over 125°, but surrounding coastal counties are.

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