Just before the unofficial start of summer, a summer projected by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to be hotter than normal, the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) has launched an online “Danger Season” map, showing which parts of the country are at risk of extreme heat, wildfires, storms, or flooding. The map will update daily through October, during the months when extreme weather events in the United States and its territories have not only become more common and damaging, but also are more likely to overlap.
The webpage will display the number of people currently under extreme weather alerts, the percentage of people who have been under at least one extreme weather alert since May 1, the percentage of extreme heat alerts clearly influenced by climate change, and the percentage of people who live in disadvantaged communities under alerts. The map covers the contiguous United States, as well as Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Searchable by city, state or zip code, the daily updates are based on National Weather Service and Climate Central data.
“We are experiencing Danger Season for fully half of the year, when large portions of the population are facing extreme weather events that have become more damaging with climate change,” said Senior Social Scientist for Climate Vulnerability Juan Declet-Barreto, who created the map. “We hope this map demonstrates to the general public and to policymakers that climate change is affecting people across the U.S. here and now, and that people in marginalized communities tend to bear the brunt of extreme weather worsened by climate change.”