(OPINION) Michael Snyder – Every summer is hot, and every summer there are heatwaves, but what we are witnessing in 2020 is rewriting all of the rules.  It has been blistering hot across the Southwest, and record after record is being broken.

In a year when we have had a seemingly endless series of things go wrong, we definitely didn’t need a historic heatwave to hit us, and it is causing all sorts of problems.  Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like we will be getting any relief for at least a few more days, because it is being reported that record-setting heat is “expected to last throughout the week”…

As many as 52 million people remain under heat alerts in the West on Monday, where some could see temperatures between 110 and 130 degrees. The heat is expected to last throughout the week, possibly setting more than 100 new daily record highs.


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A high temperature of 100 degrees is really hot, a high temperature of 110 degrees is dangerously hot, a high temperature of 120 degrees is catastrophically hot, and a high temperature of 130 degrees is not supposed to happen. But it just did. On Sunday, the high temperature in Death Valley reached 130 degrees

A temperature of 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54.4 degrees Celsius) recorded in California’s Death Valley on Sunday by the US National Weather Service could be the hottest ever measured with modern instruments, officials say. The reading was registered at 3:41 pm at the Furnace Creek Visitor Center in the Death Valley national park by an automated observation system — an electronic thermometer encased inside a box in the shade.

Prior to Sunday, modern instruments had never measured a temperature that high anywhere in the world. The old all-time global record of 134 degrees has stood since 1913, but the validity of that old record has been heavily disputed

In 1913, a weather station half an hour’s walk away recorded what officially remains the world record of 134 degrees Fahrenheit (56.7 degrees Celsius). But its validity has been disputed for a number of reasons: regional weather stations at the time didn’t report an exceptional heatwave, and there were questions around the researcher’s competence. READ MORE

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