The new name for the summer was coined by Erika Spanger-Siegfried, an analyst at the Union of Concerned Scientists. The organization introduced the phrase in a couple of blog posts and on social media last week, and the team plans to continue using the term as the hot season disasters descend. The 50 states are expected to experience unusually high temperatures this summer, and with a prolonged drought in much of the west, these threats could strain the power grid and cause blackouts.
Of course, the danger season comes at a different time depending on where you live: in the southern hemisphere, summer runs from December to February, when Australian wildfires can get out of hand. No matter where you are, however, warm weather disasters are dragging on in late spring and early fall, said Rachel Cleetus, policy director for the Concerned Scientists Union. Schools without air conditioning are closing for “hot days” more and more often, as they did in Philadelphia in late May, when classroom temperatures exceeded their level. 100 degrees.
There are also many off-season weather threats. Think of the devastating floods that hit Washington state and British Columbia in November, which caused mudslides on highways and forced thousands to evacuate. What makes summer especially threatening are the ways in which disasters can collide and worsen each other. In the Gulf of Mexico, for example, large hurricanes have cut off electricity and water services just as summer heat waves begin. in cooling, in water, “Dahl explained. As extreme heat becomes more frequent and storms become stronger, major hurricane “.
Part of the thinking behind the use of the phrase “danger station” is to make it harder for people to get dirty with the climate crisis. “I just want to say directly, frankly, 10 or 15 years ago, when we talked about these things, we didn’t want to scare people,” Cleetus said. “We wanted people to understand science and are really invited to understand its implications. And now we’re scared, we’re terrified, so we’ve let go of the world.”
Edward Maibach, director of George Mason’s Climate Change Communication Center, said the “danger season” seemed like a useful framework to help people realize the need to prepare for recurring disasters instead. to react to it. “Knowing that the danger seasons are getting longer will hopefully help people, businesses and governments recognize the need to take action now to protect the things they value and depend on,” Maibach wrote in an email. electronic in Grist.
Dahl called for a “national resilience strategy” to coordinate efforts to help communities withstand disasters and establish policies to protect people. This means building codes in the West that require cushioning space around homes to reduce the risk of fire, and national standards for heat and smoke protection for outdoor workers. “There are a lot of things that can be done locally,” he said, “but we also need to think on a much larger scale.”