July saw 3,135 new daily high temperature records in the U.S. — over 100 per day. That overwhelmed new cold records by a factor of nearly 17 to 1, as this chart from Capital Climate shows.
For the year to date, new heat records are beating cold records by a remarkable 12 to 1, which trumps the pace of the last decade by more than a factor of 5!
I like the statistical aggregation across the country, since it gets us beyond the oft-repeated point that you can’t pin any one local record temperature on global warming. A 2009 analysis shows that the average ratio for the 2000s was 2.04-to-1, a sharp increase from previous decades. Lead author Dr. Gerald Meehl explained, “If temperatures were not warming, the number of record daily highs and lows being set each year would be approximately even.”
Many of the country’s leading meteorologists and climatologists — including NASA’s James Hansen — have looked at the data and concluded that like a baseball player on steroids, our climate system is breaking records at an unnatural pace.
One state in particular is ground-zero for global warming this summer, just as it was last summer (see my 8/11 post “...