How the “Heat Dome” caused record high temperatures in Western Canada

How the “Heat Dome” caused record high temperatures in Western Canada


Edmonton-British Columbia, Alberta, Yukon and most of the Northwest Territories are sweltering under the “heat dome” and will break the historical high temperature record next week.

Three provinces, including British Columbia, Alberta and parts of western Saskatchewan and two regions High temperature warning This weekend, the temperature in many parts of British Columbia will soar above 40 degrees Celsius. By next week, the temperature in parts of northern Alberta may also be close to 40 degrees Celsius, including Fort McMurray, which is expected to reach the previous level by Tuesday. Unheard of 37 degrees Celsius.

This is a record-breaking heat wave that surprised many people, even David Phillips, a senior climatologist from Environment Canada.

“For a climatologist like me, this is a headache. I mean I like to break records, but it’s like smashing and smashing them,” Phillips told by phone on Saturday.

“Parts of western Canada are warmer than Dubai. I mean, it doesn’t seem to be Canadian stuff,” he said.

Phillips explained that the sultry temperature is due to what climatologists call a “hot dome”—a powerful high-pressure ridge that traps warm air under it like a dome, allowing the sun to bake the earth below and produce heat waves.

Phillips said that to make matters worse, most of western Canada this season was drier than usual, causing a “double whammy” effect.

“We spent a record-breaking dry spring in Okanagan, and the moisture content in southern Alberta may be half what it has been since the beginning of the year. Therefore, more solar energy warms the air, while the energy to evaporate moisture Very rarely,” Phillips explained.

“It’s a bit like a double whammy. This is why the heat is building up. Nothing can drive this bully away, it will prevent any weather from trying to enter it.”

In other words, it is unlikely that there will be any rain to provide any relief in the short-term forecast.

Although ridges of high pressure often cause hot weather in British Columbia (usually in July and August), the temperature forecast for Alberta this week is historically significant.

“The warmest [temperature] In Edmonton, the record dating back to the 1800s is 37 degrees. Therefore, we predict that Edmonton will hit a record high-if it reaches 37.3 degrees Celsius, it will be a record high. No one has ever seen it before,” Phillips said. He added that, more notably, this happened in June.

“I mean, these temperatures should be 14 to 16 degrees higher than this time of year.”

In British Columbia, except for some coastal areas such as West Vancouver, almost the entire province is under high temperature warning. However, Environment Canada predicts that the temperature in Kamloops will exceed 40 degrees for six days, which is a record of 40 degrees Celsius that never occurred in June.

“Vancouver may exceed 30 degrees Celsius one day every three or four years. We will see it for three consecutive days-it’s like the hot weather in Vancouver for 12 years,” Phillips said.

“Yesterday it was 34 degrees Celsius in Victoria. This is a beautiful dress rehearsal they will see this week.”

Although the heat wave is impressive from a meteorological point of view, Phillips pointed out that the duration of the heat wave is worrying from a public health and environmental point of view.

Phillips said that extreme heat can bring significant health risks, especially for the elderly and those with underlying health problems. But even healthy people may find themselves suffering from high temperature-related diseases, especially after several days of high temperature.

Phillips said the risk of wildfires is also a problem, because this high-pressure system usually ends with a dry thunderstorm and emits lightning, setting the dry forest on fire.

Phillips said: “When we talk, every bit of water on the ground is absorbed by the dry atmosphere.” “But it also has an impact on fish, because the water level in rivers and reservoirs will drop, and warm water will kill the fish.”

At the same time, the Pacific Northwest of the United States is also facing Through the historic heat of Washington and Oregon, The temperature in many areas is expected to be 30 degrees higher than normal. Extreme heat is expected to break historical records from eastern Washington state to towns in Portland and southern Oregon, as concerns about the risk of wildfires in areas that have experienced severe and prolonged droughts intensify.

-Documents from Canadian media and Associated Press

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