Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

17 U.S. Cities Headed for Warmest Year Ever

Climate
17 U.S. Cities Headed for Warmest Year Ever

The globe could be on track to look back on 2014 as its warmest year ever. And 17 U.S. cities are among those recording their hottest temperatures, thanks to the acceleration of climate change.

It really heated up this year for cities in the western U.S. Image credit: Climate Central

Climate Central analyzed temperature data from the country's 125 largest metropolitan areas to find the 17 scorchers. All are located west of the Rockies, with the majority in California, which has endured lengthy heat waves and a third year of unprecedented drought conditions. Eleven of the cities are in California which, as of November, was recording temperatures about 2 degrees Fahrenheit above its previous hottest year. The Santa Maria-Santa Barbara area is on track to exceed its previous record record by almost 3 degrees.

In California, the cities include Bakersfield, Fresno, Modesto, Sacramento-Roseville-Arden-Arcade, Salinas, San Diego-Carlsbad, San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, Stockton-Lodi, Vallejo-Fairfield and Visalia-Porterville. Arizona and Nevada each had two metro areas on the list: Phoenix and Tucson in the former, Las Vegas and Reno in the latter. Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington round out the list.

"The heat follows Interstate 5 from Seattle down through Portland, Sacramento and San Diego with detours to San Francisco, Fresno and Modesto before heading east to Las Vegas, Phoenix, Reno and Tucson," noted Climate Central writer Brian Kahn. "Salt Lake City, Los Angeles and El Paso are among other western metro areas also in line for one of their top five warmest years."

Climate Central's analysis also revealed that no U.S. city set a record for cold temperatures, noting that it's been almost 30 years since any city set such a record, with Kansas City, Missouri, Spokane, Washington and Boise City, Idaho notching record lows in 1985.

"And when it comes to global record coldest year, you'd have to go back even further," added Kahn. "Way further in fact. It's been over a century since the world's coldest year on record with 1909 setting the record and 1911 tying it. Going back to 1880—the year record-keeping began—the global average temperature has risen by 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit. In the U.S., temperatures have risen about 2 degrees Fahrenheit since 1895 with a large portion of that rise coming since 1970. If greenhouse gas emissions continue unabated, the U.S. average temperature could climb up to another 10 degrees Fahrenheit by the end of the 21st century."

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

California Experiences Worst Drought in 1,200 Years

8 Summertime Woes That Will Only Get Worse With Climate Change

Hottest October on Record Puts Planet on Track for Hottest Year Ever

By Michael Svoboda, Ph.D.

Despite a journey to this moment even more treacherous than expected, Americans now have a fresh opportunity to act, decisively, on climate change.

The authors of the many new books released in just the past few months (or scheduled to be published soon) seem to have anticipated this pivotal moment.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Marsh Creek in north-central California is the site of restoration project that will increase residents' access to their river. Amy Merrill

By Katy Neusteter

The Biden-Harris transition team identified COVID-19, economic recovery, racial equity and climate change as its top priorities. Rivers are the through-line linking all of them. The fact is, healthy rivers can no longer be separated into the "nice-to-have" column of environmental progress. Rivers and streams provide more than 60 percent of our drinking water — and a clear path toward public health, a strong economy, a more just society and greater resilience to the impacts of the climate crisis.

Read More Show Less

Trending

A Brood X cicada in 2004. Pmjacoby / CC BY-SA 3.0

Fifteen states are in for an unusually noisy spring.

Read More Show Less
A creative depiction of bigfoot in a forest. Nisian Hughes / Stone / Getty Images

Deep in the woods, a hairy, ape-like man is said to be living a quiet and secluded life. While some deny the creature's existence, others spend their lives trying to prove it.

Read More Show Less
President of the European Investment Bank Werner Hoyer holds a press conference in Brussels, Belgium on Jan. 30, 2020. Dursun Aydemir / Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

By Jon Queally

Noted author and 350.org co-founder Bill McKibben was among the first to celebrate word that the president of the European Investment Bank on Wednesday openly declared, "To put it mildly, gas is over" — an admission that squares with what climate experts and economists have been saying for years if not decades.

Read More Show Less