Phoenix sets another heat record, reaching 110 degrees on 55 days this year: NPR

Clouds surround downtown Phoenix at sunset on July 30, 2023.

Matt York/AP

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Matt York/AP

Clouds surround downtown Phoenix at sunset on July 30, 2023.

Matt York/AP

PHOENIX — A historic heat wave continues to stifle Phoenix — but the end may finally be in sight for residents of Arizona’s largest city.

The National Weather Service expects temperatures to reach 107°F (41.7°C) on Monday and 102°F (38.8°C) on Tuesday.

“I hate to say, ‘Yes, this will be the last,’ but that’s likely to be the case — this will be our last stretch of 110 degrees this summer,” said Chris Coleman of the National Weather Service in Phoenix.

The extreme heat warning was expected to end at 8pm on Sunday.

Phoenix reached 112 degrees Fahrenheit (44.4 degrees Celsius) by early Sunday afternoon and could reach 114 degrees Fahrenheit (45.5 degrees Celsius) for the second day in a row, meteorologists said.

Either way, it surpassed the previous record of 111 F (43.8 C) set in 1990. It also marks the 55th day this year that the official reading at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport has reached at least 110 F (43.3 C).

The city broke the previous record of 53 days – set in 2020 – when the temperature reached 114 degrees Fahrenheit (45 degrees Celsius) on Saturday.

The 114-degree mark was the latest date in a calendar year that Sky Harbor recorded a temperature that high, the weather service said.

Phoenix has had its three hottest months since record keeping began in 1895, including the hottest July and the second hottest August. The average daily temperature of 97 F (36.1 C) in June, July and August surpassed the previous record of 96.7 F (35.9 C) set three years earlier.

The average daily temperature was 102.7 F (39.3 C) in July, and the average daily temperature in August was 98.8 F (37.1 C), said Matt Salerno, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service. In July, Phoenix also set a record with a 31-day streak of highs at or above 110 F (43.3 C). The previous record of 18 consecutive days was set in 1974.

The hot summer of 2023 saw a historic heat wave extending from Texas through New Mexico and Arizona and into the California desert.

Worldwide, last month was the hottest August on record, according to the World Meteorological Organization. It was also the second hottest month, behind only July 2023.

Scientists blame human-caused climate change for an additional boost from the natural El Nino phenomenon, a temporary rise in temperatures in parts of the Pacific Ocean that changes weather around the world.

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