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Is High Heat The New Normal?

We’re asking if boiling summer temperatures are going to be the new normal. And if it’s so, how will we cope?

Mayor Fred Paris pours one of the 250 bags of ice into the Franklin Memorial Swimming Pool in Franklin, Ind., Thursday, July 21, 2011. Temperatures are expected to climb into the high 90's with heat index well over 100. (AP)

Mayor Fred Paris pours one of the 250 bags of ice into the Franklin Memorial Swimming Pool in Franklin, Ind., Thursday, July 21, 2011. Temperatures are expected to climb into the high 90's with heat index well over 100. (AP)

“Heat dome” has to be the phrase of the week. Everybody talking about heat dome, heat dome.

Killer temperatures — too often literally — over a huge section of the country.

The hottest place on Earth two days ago: Minnesota, for heaven’s sake.

It’s a summer for the record books. One thousand record highs across the country.

And this word from the weather and climate gurus: there’s more to come.

Hot hot summers, with climate change, for years. How will we cope? With our habits, our buildings, our crops, our clothes.

This hour On Point: coping with a hot, hot, hot new normal.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests:

Heidi Cullen, research correspondent and scientist for Climate Central, she’s the author of “The Weather of the Future.” Her op-ed in the New York Times Wednesday was, “The Sizzle Factor for a Restless Climate.”

Christopher Field, professor of biology and Environmental Earth Science at Stanford University, where he is also director of the Carnegie Institution’s Department of Global Ecology.

Matt Fajkus, professor at the University of Texas School of Architecture.

Andrew Jorgenson, professor of sociology, University of Utah.

From Tom’s Reading List:

This hour we’ll hear the following songs:

  • “(Love is Like a) Heatwave’ by Martha Reeves & The Vandellas
  • “Hot, Hot, Hot” by Buster Poindexter & The Banshees of Blue
  • “Cool River” by Maria Muldaur
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WDBJ-TV7 meteorologist Leo Hirsbrunner, right, wipes his eyes during the early morning newscast as anchors Kimberly McBroom, center, and guest anchor Steve Grant deliver the news at the station in Roanoke, Va., Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015. Reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward were killed during a live broadcast Wednesday, while on assignment in Moneta. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

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Aug 28, 2015
Lightning first ignited the Meadow fire on July 20, 2014 in Yosemite. By September 8, the fire had charred 2,582 acres. Bernie Krause has recorded soundscapes of national parks destroyed by large areas of forest fires. Listen below.  (National Park Service)

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Aug 28, 2015
WDBJ-TV7 meteorologist Leo Hirsbrunner, right, wipes his eyes during the early morning newscast as anchors Kimberly McBroom, center, and guest anchor Steve Grant deliver the news at the station in Roanoke, Va., Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015. Reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward were killed during a live broadcast Wednesday, while on assignment in Moneta. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

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