An onslaught of record-breaking heat across much of the US has provided yet another indicator of a longer-term issue – summers are progressively getting hotter for Americans in all corners of the country. Studies have found that summers are generally getting hotter, including much warmer night-times which reduces the amount of relief people get from the elevated temperatures. Heatwaves are getting fiercer and are moving more slowly as the planet warms, with heat now the largest weather-related cause of death in the US.

“We are now starting to have this complicated relationship with summer,” said Deepti Singh, a climate and extreme events expert at Washington State University. “The extreme events are happening more quickly than the rate of mean temperature warming, which is putting a strain on everything we depend upon as a society.

“If you talk to climate scientists, there’s certainly an anxiety as summer approaches. It can be distressing.”

[A] county-level map of summer temperature increases shows that the warming isn’t uniform, however, with large jumps in heat across much of the US west and in the north-eastern US.

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