According to preliminary data from the World Meteorological Association, the beginning of July marked the world's hottest week on record.
Next week might be worse.
In particular, California's Death Valley could mark the hottest temperature ever recorded on earth with Scientific American warning that heat could surpass 130-degrees this weekend.
Temperatures in Death Valley could rocket past their usual, already-mind-boggling typical values because of a heat dome that has trapped sizzling hot air over the southern tier of the U.S. Records could also be set in Las Vegas, Nev., Phoenix, Ariz. and parts of Southern California. Phoenix has already seen 14 days in a row with high temperatures at or above 110 degrees F, which is the third-longest such stretch on record. -Scientific American
Hilariously, while Scientific American attributes the recent warming to "greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere by humans burning fossil fuels," the publication also notes that "The WMO, which keeps official global weather records, places the hottest temperature ever measured on Earth at 134 degrees F; this reading was taken in Death Valley on July 10, 1913."
Ah yes, 1913. When greenhouse gasses emitted by man were [checks data] 90% lower than they are today.
The record temperatures come amid a warning from the National Weather Service over "sweltering and dangerous heat" blanketing the West.
As of 6pm ET this evening, the widespread and extensive nature of excessive heat warnings and heat advisories cover over 100 million people. This weekend the sweltering and dangerous heat will remain in the forecast, especially across much of the West. Practice heat safety! pic.twitter.com/a26ZBjKQ93— National Weather Service (@NWS) July 14, 2023
Meanwhile in Las Vegas, emergency room doctors are seeing a flood of dehydrated construction workers, passed-out old folks and other victims of the intense heat, as the city's all-time record of 117-degrees may also be breached this weekend.
"We’ve been talking about this building heat wave for a week now, and now the most intense period is beginning," the National Weather Service wrote on Friday.
In fact, nearly one-third of Americans are under extreme heat advisories, watches and warnings, AP reports.
"This heatwave is NOT typical desert heat due to its long duration, extreme daytime temperatures, & warm nights. Everyone needs to take this heat seriously, including those who live in the desert," the NWS's Las Vegas office said in a tweet.
Phoenix, Arizona suffered through its 15th consecutive day of temperatures over 110 degrees on Friday, hitting a high of 116 by late afternoon. The longest stretch of temps above 110 degrees in the city was 18 days, recorded in 1974 (when scientists were convinced we'd all freeze to death due to global cooling).
"This weekend there will be some of the most serious and hot conditions we’ve ever seen," said Phoenix's chief heat officer (?), David Hondula, adding "I think that it’s a time for maximum community vigilance."
Stay cool out there.