Floods, fires and heat waves: the United States hit hard by climate disasters

Sylvie Claire / June 16, 2022


Nearly 120 million Americans were affected to one degree or another by a heat wave warning, which hit parts of the Midwest and Southeast. A dome of high pressure is expected to produce above-normal to record temperatures across the area today and tomorrow, the National Weather Service warned. This heat, coupled with high humidity, will likely generate temperatures well above 37 degrees Celsius in many locations, it warned. In some areas of Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio, the mercury is expected to reach 43 degrees.
At the northern fringe of this heat dome, high temperatures collide with cool air masses and created severe thunderstorms Monday, leaving several hundred thousand people without power in the Midwest. This cold front is likely to bring more destructive weather, such as hail and high winds.
Further west, images released by the National Parks Agency showed flood damage in Yellowstone Park. All entrances to this vast park of almost 9000 km2, straddling the states of Wyoming, Montana and Idaho, remained closed until further notice due to extremely dangerous conditions, caused by a flooded river and torrential rains. Anyone still in the park was asked to evacuate. Measured flooding on the Yellowstone River is above record levels, the national parks agency wrote online. The flooding has caused sinkholes or mudslides, which are cutting off multiple stretches of road and several bridges may also be affected, it says.
At the same time, heatwave warnings were issued in several regions of California and Arizona, where temperatures and a chronic drought further aggravate the risk of fires. Two fires, each having already covered more than 120,000 hectares, continued to burn Tuesday in the state of New Mexico.


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