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An excessive, prolonged heat wave will further parch large swaths of California in the longest and hottest heat wave of the year, according to forecasters at the National Weather Service.
Beginning Wednesday, the weather service predicts triple-digit temperatures will create hot, dry conditions in Southern California that will spread north later in the week. Excessive heat will dominate the forecast through at least Sunday.
The heat may be record-breaking and will likely produce a very high heat-illness risk, said David Sweet, meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Oxnard.
“The frequency of extreme heat waves is likely to increase by 3 to 10 times by the end of the century, depending on where you live in the U.S.,” study lead author Lucas Vargas Zeppetello told USA TODAY.
Hollywood celebs over-water their estates as California tightens restrictions
Sustained high pressure will keep temperatures in coastal areas above normal, and likely set up a “prolonged and likely dangerous heat event,” the Los Angeles-area weather office wrote.
The ongoing climate crisis is a global, multidirectional one: forests are burning, sea levels are rising, temperatures and weather conditions are extreme. Zooming in on California — Los Angeles and surrounding Southern California regions in particular — years of historically severe drought conditions have created growing challenges with water insecurity.
And though environmental concerns affect everyone, income inequality is another crisis complicating the climate conversation, as many high-income celebrities are recently coming under fire for charting private jets for flights lasting only 20 minutes or less (resulting in concerning amounts of carbon dioxide emissions) and reckless water waste.
As recently reported by the Los Angeles Times, major Hollywood and entertainment industry-adjacent names (Sylvester Stallone, Dwyane Wade, Kevin Hart, Kourtney Kardashian) living in the cities of Calabasas and Hidden Hills have been a few of some 2,000 citizens who were recently issued “notices of exceedance” by the Las Virgenes Municipal Water District, which services some 75,000 customers across many neighborhoods in the San Fernando Valley.
Water distribution in California is very complicated and decentralized
According to The Hollywood Reporter, these exceedances stand in contrast to the slow but steady overall reduction in water use among Los Angeles county inhabitants, aided by massive efforts by the State Water Resources Control Board to reduce water use.
Las Virgenes began its water-shortage contingency plan back in June 2021, and now, 14 months later, the district is in stage three, which requires a 50% mandatory water reduction for all customers. “The state is requiring that the conservation target is that people have about 55 gallons of water to use per person per day inside your home,” according to Mike McNutt, Las Virgenes spokesman.
“There are over 400 suppliers that serve water to the major cities and towns in California. And then there are thousands of additional water suppliers that provide water to smaller communities,” says Nachbaur, adding that the State Water Resources Control Board oversees and regulates many of those suppliers by tracking water use by city and water agency as part of the state’s conservation requirement.
Rise in complaints signals an increase in climate awareness
In July, LADWP’s Water Conservation Response Unit (Water CRU) received more than 2,000 water waste complaints from all over the city, indicating a positive trend in most Los Angeles citizens’ climate consciousness. Of those few thousand complaints, the Water CRU issued 116 citations — 3 of which carried a monetary fine.
“The increase in water waste complaints we have received shows people are conscientious when it comes to water waste that they see in their communities and we are grateful to them for being our eyes and ears because we can’t do it alone,” Anselmo Collins, senior assistant general manager of the Water System for LADWP, said in the statement.
The global climate crisis leaves everyone vulnerable
UN Secretary General António Guterres on Tuesday warned that the world is “sleepwalking” into environmental destruction, as he launched a flash $160 million appeal for flood-ravaged Pakistan.
More than 1,100 people have been killed and 33 million others impacted in one of the country’s worst monsoon seasons in over a decade.
“The Pakistani people are facing a monsoon on steroids – the relentless impact of epochal levels of rain and flooding,” Guterres said during the appeal’s launch.
There’s still hope that global temperature increases resulting from human-caused climate change can be curbed, which would avert even more catastrophic heat in some areas on Earth. But even if the global temperature goals of the Paris Agreement on climate change are met, study authors warn that heat waves are destined to become more prevalent in coming decades.