Heat Dome Explained - Extreme temperatures in Canada, US

Extreme temperatures have killed hundreds of people in Canada and areas of the United States. Heat dome, a climate phenomenon that causes temperature spikes, is to blame for the weather.

According to Chief Coroner Lisa Lapointe, Canada is experiencing a severe heatwave, which has resulted in a 195 per cent increase in sudden deaths in the last five days.
"At least 486 sudden and unexpected fatalities have been reported to our agency between Friday and 1 p.m. today," Lapointe stated in a statement.
The unusual heat wave prompted the country's temperature to reach 49.5 degrees Celsius, a new high. The abrupt jump in temperature has been attributed to the heat dome effect, according to weather specialists.

What is a heat dome, exactly?

A heat dome arises when the atmosphere holds hot ocean air like a lid or cap, according to the US Department of Commerce's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
When there is a significant variation (or gradient) in ocean temperatures, the phenomenon begins. According to NOAA, the gradient allows more warm air, heated by the ocean surface, to rise above the ocean surface in a process known as convection.
The hot air is moved east by prevailing winds, but northern variations in the jet stream capture it and send it toward land, where it sinks, resulting in heatwaves, according to the report.

How long does it take for a heat dome to die?

Many weather scientists and organisations, such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), have examined these climatic changes and determined that a heat dome normally lasts a week. According to them, the formation gets too heavy to stand on and collapses, releasing the trapped air and putting an end to the swelter.

Heat domes provide a variety of effects.

Those without air conditioning watch their homes' temperatures rise to unbearable levels, leading to sudden deaths like those documented in Canada and areas of the United States. According to weather scientists, heat-trapping can harm crops, dry off vegetation, and cause droughts.
The scorching heat will also increase energy demand, particularly for electricity, causing rates to soar.
Wildfires, which destroy a large amount of land in the United States each year, maybe fueled by the heat domes.

Heat domes and climate change

The consequences of rising temperatures (climate change) on more intense heat waves have been highlighted by weather scientists. Average US temperatures have risen since the late 1800s, according to a 2017 NOAA survey.
Climate experts predict more days of extreme heat in the coming decades.
Apart from the US, cities as far north as the Arctic Circle broke heat records this week.

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