As viewed on a weather map of the globe, no fewer than five powerful heat domes are swelling over the landmasses of the Northern Hemisphere. These zones of high pressure in the atmosphere, intensified by climate change, are generating unforgiving blasts of heat in North America, Europe and Asia simultaneously.
The heat domes, in a number of instances, are the source of record high temperatures and are contributing to swarms of wildfires in western North America and in Siberia. In recent days, all-time record highs have been set in Turkey, northern Japan and Northern Ireland.
Lined up like a parade, the heat domes are also part of a traffic jam of weather systems that instigated the flood disaster in Europe last week.
Heat domes like this are normal at this time of year, the hottest point of summer, but it’s unusual to have this many this intense. Every one of these heat domes is generating exceptional weather.
A trip around the heated hemisphereStarting in the western United States, temperatures in Montana climbed more than 20 degrees above normal on Monday. Glasgow, Mont., spiked to 110 degrees, matching its third-highest temperature on record since 1893. Billings hit 107 degrees, tying its second-highest temperature recorded since 1934. The heat is worsening exceptional drought conditions in both the western United States and Canada, creating tinderbox conditions for wildfires that are spreading smoke all over North America.
Across the Atlantic, the heat dome lodged over the British Isles brought Northern Ireland its hottest day on record Sunday. The temperature in the town of Ballywatticock soared to 88.3 degrees Saturday.