Less than two weeks after an extreme and deadly heatwave in the Pacific Northwest, the a heat dome broiled the West again this weekend as climate change caused by the combustion and extraction of fossil fuels continues to kill people, especially those who labor in fields and warehouses. The late-June heatwave, which killed nearly 200 people, would have been “virtually impossible” without climate change, according to an analysis from the World Weather Attribution group. Both Oregon and Washington passed new safety laws last week to protect workers especially vulnerable to heat.
Not to be outdone, Death Valley hit 130°F on Friday, tying last year’s record as the hottest temperature reliably recorded on planet Earth. Meanwhile, well over 1 billion tidal sea creatures have been cooked to death along the Pacific Coast in scenes University of British Columbia marine biologist Christopher Harley told the New York Times was “like one of those postapocalyptic movies.”
(Western heat dome: New York Times $, Washington Post $, Washington Post $, Bloomberg $, Reuters, Washington Post $, Bloomberg $; Vulnerable workers: InsideClimate News, The Guardian; Worker protection rules: The Oregonian, AP; Attribution study: Heat study: AP, Buzzfeed, Washington Post $, Quartz, CNN, Reuters, CBS, Thomson Reuters Foundation, New York Times $, AP, The Hill; Death Valley: Earther, New York Times $, NBC, The Hill, Washington Post $, Mother Jones; Tidal deaths: New York Times $, National Observer, Modern Farmer, CNN, NPR; Climate Signals background: Extreme heat and heatwaves)