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California Declares Emergency due to Massive Heatwave

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California and other parts of the U.S. southwest reported dangerously high temperature. So, the state declared an emergency to look into the rising power system concerns. 

An extreme heat warning has been issued in the states of Arizona and California, and southern areas of Nevada and Utah.

People living in these areas are advised to stay in air-conditioned areas and out of the sun.

The Californian citizens have also been commended to conserve energy during peak times, as temperatures are likely to remain between 100-110F (37-43C) until Sunday.

 

Governor Gavin Newsom said the state of emergency will be in effect until 23:59 on Saturday (06:59 GMT on Sunday). Its basic aim is to “reduce the strain on the energy infrastructure and increase energy capacity”.

Most of the state’s power grid is controlled by the California Independent System Operator. They asked people to set thermostats to 78F (25C) or higher. 

They also advised the people to avoid using major appliances and unnecessary lights.

 

California’s Death Valley National Park is typically one of the hottest spots in the world. On Thursday, a thermometer marked 130F (54C) at the Furnace Creek Visitor’s Center.

Willo Alford, who runs a general store in Death Valley Village told – “Up to a certain temperature, it’s OK, like maybe 120F (49C), but once it gets above that is when it really gets hard.”

 

California
A sign warns of extreme heat danger at the salt flats of Badwater Basin inside the Death Valley National Park

 

Several cities in the San Francisco Bay Area have set up cooling centres due to high temperature.

In Phoenix, Arizona, the temperatures reached 118F (48C) on Thursday, while Las Vegas reported 115F (46C) and Denver reached 100F (38C) for the third day in a row.

About 50 million people were under excessive heat warnings and heat advisories across the southwest parts of the US.

 

A high-pressure system parked on the southwest since Tuesday triggered the heatwave. It happened a week before the official start of summer in the northern hemisphere.

The massive heat has led to a worsening mega-drought that has dried up rivers and reservoirs. 

According to the scientists states in the US West Coast should expect more of these events.

 

“Heatwaves are getting worse in the West [Coast] because the soil is so dry” from the region’s megadrought, Park Williams, a climate and fire scientist at the University of California was quote by the Associated Press as saying.

“We could have two, three, four, five of these heat waves before the end of the summer.”

 

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