Alaska Hits 90 Degrees For First Time Ever
Alaska broke an all-time record Friday as Anchorage reached 90 degrees.
It surpassed the 85 degree record set on June 14, 1969 at Anchorage International Airport. Anchorage wasn't the only city in the state to set records in terms of temperature. According to reports, Kenai and King Salmon both reached 89 degrees for the first time.
The state was forced to issue a dense smoke advisory on Friday dude to widespread fires that are creating smoke and limiting visibility. The advisory is in effect until noon local time Saturday.
Alaska has suffered from a massive amount of heat that has remained in the region for days, sending temperatures to the record levels seen in Anchorage and other cities. Earlier in the week, the National Weather Service warned residents to prepare for "record or near-record high temperatures."
That heat is causing widespread wildfires that are burning vegetation and killing trees. According to one meteologist, 634,000 acres in Alaska have burned in fires so far this year.
Climate Change to Cause More Severe Weather Events
The extreme temperatures are being blamed in part on climate change which is causing more extreme weather events. One only needs to look at the hurricane season in the Atlantic in 2017 for evidence. Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico and other islands in its wake.
June was another record-setting month for Alaska, going down as the hottest June on record. It was the 16th month in a row where average temperatures in Alaska were above the normal range. Melting sea ice and warmer water are driving the rising temperatures. The southern part of the state is feeling the brunt of the heat.
Europe Also Set Heat Records in June
Alaska isn't the only place to set records in terms of temperatures. Across the planet, June came in as the hottest month ever.
Based on data released by Copernicus Climate Change Service this week, the average temperature in Europe for June was higher than any other June on record. Average temperatures were greater than 2°C above normal compared with this past June. Europe suffered through a heat wave in June that while not as long as previous ones recorded last summer, was extremely intense.
There were five days of above average temperatures. That was followed by record-breaking heat in the eastern part of Europe. As a result, June was 1°C above the past record for June set in 1999. It's also higher based on the trends seen during the past decades.