Seattle and Portland Aren’t Built for Extreme Heat Waves


Oregon Governor Kate Brown declared a state of emergency towards this week’s heatwave, and Portland’s emergency management department mobilized 2,000 volunteers trained to respond to natural disasters, help manage cooling centers and misting stations, and provide water to people in need. he did. may need. In some cases, they go door to door.

Authorities encourage people to check their neighbors, especially the elderly or those living on the street.

Dan Douthit, spokesman for the Portland Bureau of Emergency Management, said emergency planners are discussing longer-term strategies as well as more immediate efforts. Does the area need air conditioning in the buildings? Does the city need to set up special cooling centers?

The June heat wave, which brought the temperatures to a record high of 116 degrees in Portland, It almost certainly wouldn’t exist without global warmingsaid an international team of researchers. An important United Nations report this week discovered that warming will intensify across the planet because countries have delayed getting their fossil fuel emissions under control for too long.

Warming especially threatens low-income residents. During the last heat wave, Professor of climate adaptation at Portland State University, Dr. Vivek Shandas went to the poorest parts of the city with a calibrated thermometer and got a reading of 121 degrees; The day was recorded at the airport.

Now officials, Dr. He asked Shandas to do a formal study of heat pockets in the city; A team of volunteer researchers planned to take temperature measurements of East Portland, where there is less shade and green space, and prepare a report on their findings.

Dr. “We’re seeing a huge shift from administrators, municipal agencies, who want to get ahead of these things, because they’re hearing that the deaths we’ve had during the last heat wave were preventable,” Shandas said.


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