Deadly Heat: Record Scorching Temperatures Kill the Vulnerable, Worsen Inequality Across the Globe

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As we enter the month of June, scorching temperatures are already making deadly heat waves around the world. Data confirmed last month was the hottest May on record, putting the Earth on a 12-month streak of record-breaking temperatures. On Wednesday, the World Meteorological Organization announced there is an 80% chance the average global temperature will exceed 1.5 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels for at least one of the next five years. “We’re going to see a more chaotic planet as the climate heats up,” says Jeff Goodell, a journalist covering the climate crisis. Goodell describes “the heat wave scenario that keeps climate scientists up at night”: a major power outage that could cut off air conditioning and cause thousands of deaths from extreme temperatures.

In Mexico, it’s already so hot that howler monkeys and parrots are falling dead from the trees. “What we’re experiencing right now goes beyond what is normal,” says Ruth Cerezo-Mota, climate researcher at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. “We have been saying this for many years now.”

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