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Heat Wave: Washington DC Sets Record With 138 Straight Hours Above 80°F

US heat map, July 10-19, 2013

Is this yet another sign Washington should be moving more urgently and aggressively to combat climate change? The heat wave that engulfed Washington D.C. for most of last week resulted in 138 straight hours of temperatures above 80 degrees; that’s 5.75 days. It was the longest above-80-degree stretch on record. The next longest was just two years ago with 128 hours. Last week also broke records for the highest minimum temperatures recorded.

Apart from this very long stretch above 80 degrees, the past four years in Washington D.C. have seen many of other records broken, including the three hottest Julys on record, the most 100-degree days in a month, and the longest straight stretch above 100 degrees, the Capital Weather Gang has reported.

Washington DC heatwave temps

The warming trend since the turn of this century in undeniable, with daily records outnumbering cold records in Washington DC by 7 to 1, and almost 16 to 1 over the past 3.5 years. As you can see from the top image, most of the United States was also experiencing above average temperatures from 10-19 July, and it was very hot indeed in many areas of the country.

Feature image: Maximum U.S. air temperatures for July 10-19, 2013, NOAA
Lower image: Total days above 80 degrees or hight by year since 1872 in Washington D.C, Capital Weather Gang
Via Climate Progress, Capital Weather Gang


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