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13th July 2014

Interactive map shows city temperatures by 2100

A new interactive graphic and analysis released this week by research and journalism organisation Climate Central illustrates how much hotter summers will be in 1,001 U.S. cities by 2100, if current emissions trends continue, and shows which cities they are going to most feel like.



"Summer temperatures in most American cities are going to feel like summers now in Texas and Florida — very, very hot," comments Alyson Kenward, lead researcher of the analysis, which looked at projected changes in summer (June-July-August) high temperatures. On average, those temperatures will be 3.9 to 5.6°C (7-10°F) hotter, with some cities as much as 6.7°C (12°F) hotter by the end of the century.

Among the most striking examples featured in the interactive are:

• Boston, where average summer high temperatures will likely be more than 5.6°C (10°F) hotter than they are now, making it feel as steamy as North Miami Beach is today.

• Saint Paul, Minnesota, where summer highs are expected to rise by an average of 6.7°C (12°F), putting it on par with Mesquite, Texas.

• Memphis, where summer high temperatures could average a sizzling 37.8°C (100°F), typical of Laredo, Texas.

• Las Vegas, with summer highs projected to average a scorching 43.9°C (111°F), like summers today in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

• Phoenix, where summer high temperatures would average a sweltering 45.6°C (114°F), which will feel like Kuwait City.

This analysis only accounts for daytime summer heat — the hottest temperatures of the day, on average between June-July-August — and doesn't incorporate humidity or dewpoint, both of which contribute to how uncomfortable summer heat can feel. Other impacts the map does not include are rising sea levels and a likely increase in storms and severe weather events.

Recent articles by Fox News and the Daily Telegraph claimed that scientists have been "tampering" with U.S. temperature data. For those who care about real science (as opposed to conspiracy theories), Skeptical Science has a thorough debunking here.

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