I reported recently on the world setting heat records three days in a row. It turns out, the first 4 days were record highs.
The first four days of this week were the hottest ever recorded.
Smoke from wildfires is choking cities around the world.
Global Sea Surface Temps – record high.
Global Sea Ice – record low.
Response from our 'leaders': maintain course.
— Mike Hudema (@MikeHudema) July 8, 2023
But I’m not even focusing on the growing heat records here. The story today is the oceans. The oceans are warming even more than the land, and it’s extreme. The headline from the Washington Post: “Florida ocean temperatures at ‘downright shocking’ levels.” There are a few issues here. One is that this extreme ocean heat is exacerbating the Florida heat wave. Another is that the extreme heat could fuel hurricanes, making them bigger and deadlier and costlier than they already are. There are other problems as well.
“The unprecedented ocean warmth around the state — connected to historically warm oceans worldwide — is further intensifying its heat wave and stressing coral reefs, with conditions that could end up strengthening hurricanes,” Dan Stillman writes for the Washington Post. “Much of Florida is seeing its warmest year on record, with temperatures running 3 to 5 degrees above normal. While some locations have been setting records since the beginning of the year, the hottest weather has come with an intense heat dome cooking the Sunshine State in recent weeks. That heat dome has made coastal waters extremely warm, including ‘downright shocking‘ temperatures of 92 to 96 degrees in the Florida Keys, meteorologist and journalist Bob Henson said Sunday in a tweet.”
Lots of talk about the very warm Gulf of Mexico, specifically focused on South Florida. Sea “surface” temps in the Florida Keys are 92-95 degrees. That’s boiling for them! More typically it would be in the upper 80s. This map shows departures from normal of ~5 degrees F 🧵 1/ pic.twitter.com/wA5iD0SiDz
— Jeff Berardelli (@WeatherProf) July 10, 2023
In fact, it’s so hot that the color scales of some maps don’t have a color for such high temperatures.
Broke my color table at 32°C. Max is 34.2°C from ECMWF HRES SST during forecast. pic.twitter.com/BzNqcZXT7d
— Ryan Maue (@RyanMaue) July 9, 2023
You know what they say about Florida: “It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity.” Well, what this ocean heat wave is doing is creating more humidity. That makes it feel much hotter, and it also holds heat through the night more, which keeps it from cooling down.
I'd say this is unbelievable, but that word has been losing its meaning lately. #Miami just hit a 109.9°F heat index at 1pm on Monday.
This is the 30th consecutive day with a 100°+ heat index, a record 5th day at 105+, and an unprecedented 2nd day at 109+ https://t.co/7muPgS5u3s
— Brian McNoldy (@BMcNoldy) July 10, 2023
So, yes, aside from oppressive heat & humidity and coral bleaching, and
More cleantech, please.
Featured image (sea surface temperatures on July 9) courtesy of Brian McNoldy/University of Miami/NASA/MSFC/SPoRT
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