Pacific Northwest Continues to Bake under Scorching Heat, Temperatures Reach 145 Degrees
The Pacific Northwest is experiencing an all-time worse heat wave, with an intensity never recorded by modern civilization. Shocking satellite imagery from the European Space Agency’s Sentinel-3 satellite showed that ground temperatures have reached as high as 145 degrees Fahrenheit (63 degrees Celsius) in Wenatchee, Washington.
The region has been baking under a record heat dome for days now, which has resulted in a record-breaking temperature rise. These temperatures are based on air readings, recorded anywhere from 4 to 6 feet off the ground to capture accurate data.
However, satellites can provide a different take on heat distribution during a heat wave. The Sentinel-3 satellite has a sensor called the Sea and Land Surface Temperature Radiometer that allows it to capture various observations of the surface temperature of the planet.
The satellite imagery exhibited that the built-up metro areas of major cities of the Pacific Northwest, including Seattle, Victoria and Vancouver, are warmer than the surrounding region. The interior areas of Washington saw temperatures reach 131 degrees Fahrenheit or greater, including 145 degrees Fahrenheit in Wenatchee.
The National Weather Service issued an excessive heat warning for much of Washington and Oregon, some of which were to remain in effect all week. According to weather forecasters, the temperatures would remain extremely hot into the next week as well.
A wave of cool ocean breeze offered some respite overnight in Portland and Seattle, with temperatures falling into the 60s. In Salem, one of the hardest-hit cities by the heat wave, temperatures fell 56 degrees, to 61 from 117. But this was merely a short-lived relief as temperatures are predicted to rise in the coming days.
Almost all the years of the 21st century have been recorded as the warmest years in human history so far. Last year was tied with 2016 as the hottest year on record. The oppressive heat settled in the Pacific Northwest was the result of a wide and deep mass of high-pressure air, creating a high-pressure zone known as a heat dome.
This heat wave has created inconvenience and health issues for the locals. Both Oregon and Washington have reported an increase in heat-related illnesses such as heat stroke, heat syncope, heat exhaustion, dehydration, or heat cramps, since the beginning of the heat wave.
The heat has also melted many wires supplying power around the region, some of which have been fixed since. So far, no deaths have been reported due to the heat wave. However, if the Pacific Northwest heat wave continues for a long duration, the region is likely to suffer tremendously. Although, who knows this might open the eyes of climate change naysayers, such as the former president!
Via: New York Times