An extreme heat wave has been ravaging the southwest and middle of Canada and the west of the United States for a few days now. Multiple heat records have been killed and special centres have been set up in some places where residents can go to cool down. In the regions, it doesn‘t usually get so hot in summer.
In the Canadian province of British Columbia, more than forty records were broken last weekend, including the Whistler ski resort. The Canadian Weather and Environment Organization has issued heat warnings for British Columbia, Alberta and parts of Saskatchewan, Yukon and the Northwest Territories.
The government organization warns about a peak of 40 degrees later in the week. That’s about 10 to 15 degrees above the usual temperature at this time of year. The highest temperature ever in Canada was measured in the state of Saskatchewan in 1937; it was 45 degrees. That record could die later this week.
The US National Meteorological Institute has issued heat warnings for Washington and Oregon states. For County Multnomah in Oregon, there is even a “life-threatening warmth”. In Oregon, visitors restrictions on public places such as malls were temporarily lifted, allowing people to cool down indoors.
High Pressure Area Above the Pacific
Seattle, Washington, it was 38.3 degrees on Saturday, making it the hottest June day ever. For the US too, temperatures are likely to rise even further today.
The heat has to do with a large high pressure area above the Pacific Ocean. Experts link current heat in the areas to climate change and global warming.