Panther Fried: Florida Tech students share their experiences during the hottest summer on Earth | News

Did you beat the heat during your summer vacation? Well, this was quite common for everyone around the world, with the summer of 2023 being one for the record books.

According to NASA’s Goddard Institute, July 2023 was the hottest month on Earth in modern history. Globally, there have been several unprecedented heat waves far from normal temperatures. Heat has also extended beyond the atmosphere and into the oceans, where global sea surface temperatures have remained well above any previous record since March of this year.

Global average temperature rise from 1850 to 2019.

Phoenix, Arizona, is one of the hottest cities in the United States, with an average annual temperature of 75 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). While the city is no stranger to heat, the summer of 2023 was the hottest in recorded history, with temperatures topping 110 degrees dozens of times throughout that time period, according to the National Weather Service in Phoenix.

Eden Stroman, a first-year ocean engineering student, spent part of the summer in Phoenix and remembers the extreme heat she experienced.

“When I was in town, it was 116 degrees Fahrenheit. If you were in the sun for more than a few minutes, you would feel like you were melting,” Stroman said. “It was all over the news and there were warnings not to go out for long periods of time. They even showed on the news that a woman died on the road due to heat exhaustion.

The extreme heat has left many people around the world worried about how to live in these conditions. Stroman mentioned how difficult it is to know when the heat is coming, and how hot it will be.

“The news was warning people by showing a picture of Phoenix when it was 80 degrees Fahrenheit and when it was 116 degrees Fahrenheit, and there was no difference,” Stroman said. “That’s how dangerous it is because you can’t see the danger.”

But extreme heat wasn’t limited to the United States. The Southern Hemisphere is affected during the winter period, also known as the Northern Hemisphere summer period.

José Fuentes, a third-year physics student, visited southern Brazil during the summer when weather conditions are typically mild, similar to the fall-to-winter transition. However, he encountered more heat than expected.

“The winter this year was much hotter, and the humidity, which is usually less severe during the winter months in Brazil, was much higher than I remember when I was young,” Fuentes said. “The feelings of discomfort and walking through air like water were very intense during my visit this year.”

However, not every place experiences the same weather. Places like New England and the northern states experience milder weather.

Otto Dorschner, a junior studying aerospace engineering, spent most of his summer in coastal Maine. From his experience during the summer, he reported that conditions were very wet and it was the wettest season on record in all of New England.

“Even though the weather wasn’t necessarily cold, with sunny days being in the 80s and even around the 90s, overall it was just kind of gray with periods of week-long rainy day after rainy day,” Dorschner said. “Sometimes it’s nice in the afternoon for a few hours before it starts to rain.”

Global temperatures are expected to continue to rise if greenhouse gases continue to be released into the atmosphere. As the Earth’s climate changes, these conditions are neither uniform nor linear due to continuing research over time.

While this summer may be the hottest in history, it is expected that these records will be broken in the future if changes are not made. The US Environmental Protection Agency says that by investing in renewable energy, clean transportation and protecting ecosystems, it can provide climate stabilizing effects to limit the rise in global temperatures.

Helical temperature chart

Spiral plot of temperature anomalies between 1880 and 2023 provided by NASA. The end of the chart shows 2023.

(Marks for translation) News

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