Death Valley, California, has set a new record for the hottest month ever recorded in the United States, with an average temperature of 108.1 degrees Fahrenheit (42.3 Celsius) reported in July 2021, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The extreme heat in Death Valley is due to its low elevation, clear skies, and lack of moisture, which allows the sun’s rays to penetrate deeper into the ground, heating up the rocks and soil. The record-breaking heat is consistent with the overall trend of rising temperatures worldwide and highlights the impact of global warming.
Hotter Than Hell: Death Valley Sets New Record for Hottest Month Ever
Death Valley, California, has set a new record for the hottest month ever recorded in the United States. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Death Valley reported an average temperature of 108.1 degrees Fahrenheit (42.3 Celsius) in July 2021. This is the highest temperature ever recorded in the contiguous United States for a month, surpassing the previous record of 107.4 degrees Fahrenheit set in July 2017.
Why is Death Valley so hot?
Death Valley, located in the Mojave Desert, is one of the hottest places on Earth. The extreme heat in Death Valley is due to a combination of factors, including the area’s low elevation, clear skies, and lack of moisture. The valley sits at an elevation of 282 feet below sea level, and its highest point, Telescope Peak, rises to 11,049 feet above sea level. This massive difference in elevation creates a unique microclimate that traps heat.
Clear skies also play a crucial role in Death Valley’s extreme heat. With little to no cloud cover, the sun’s rays beat down on the ground, causing temperatures to soar. The lack of moisture in the air allows the sun’s rays to penetrate deeper into the ground, heating up the rocks and soil. The hot surfaces then radiate the heat back into the air, contributing to the extreme temperatures.
How does the heat affect people and wildlife?
The extreme heat in Death Valley can be dangerous and potentially deadly. Heat-related illnesses, such as heat exhaustion and heatstroke, are common in the area. Visitors are advised to drink plenty of water, wear loose-fitting clothing, and avoid strenuous activity during the hottest parts of the day.
Wildlife in Death Valley has also adapted to the extreme heat. Many animals, such as the desert bighorn sheep and the desert tortoise, are active during the cooler parts of the day and seek shade during the hottest parts of the day. Several species of plants in Death Valley have also adapted to the harsh desert environment by storing water in their leaves and stems.
What does the record-breaking heat mean for climate change?
The record-breaking heat in Death Valley is consistent with the overall trend of rising temperatures worldwide. Climate scientists have warned that global warming will lead to more frequent and severe heatwaves, which can have devastating effects on people and the environment. The average temperature in Death Valley has been rising over the past several decades, with July 2021 reporting the highest temperature ever recorded.
Q: Is Death Valley the hottest place on Earth?
A: Death Valley is one of the hottest places on Earth but is not the hottest. The title for the hottest place on Earth belongs to the Lut Desert in Iran, which has recorded surface temperatures of up to 159 degrees Fahrenheit.
Q: How long has Death Valley been recording temperatures?
A: Temperature records for Death Valley date back to 1911.
Q: Can people live in Death Valley?
A: While there are some small communities in Death Valley, the extreme heat and harsh environment make it a challenging place to live year-round. Most visitors come to Death Valley for outdoor recreational activities or to witness the unique natural beauty of the area.