California heat wave may be global warming

July 25, 2006

Scientists say although summer usually brings "heat waves," California's recent record high temperatures might be the result of global warming.

Taken by itself, California's heat wave isn't out of the ordinary, Don Whitlow, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, told the San Diego Union-Tribune.

"It's summer. And it's hot," said Whitlow. "Natural cycles happen."

But "hot" might be an understatement: In El Cajon, Saturday's temperature reached 113 degrees -- 12 degrees higher than the previous record. In Escondido, where the previous record high was 96, it hit 112.

Although looking at yearly temperatures during the past 100 years would find similar variations, climate experts told the Union-Tribune such temperature spikes may be occurring more frequently and more fiercely because of global warming.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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