Parts of Texas and Arizona are baking at temperatures above 110°F today. Phoenix recently endured a 30-day stretch exceeding this level. This extreme heat raises the question – can people survive at these temperatures, especially without air conditioning or other means of cooling? In some parts of the world, the heat is even more intense, forcing people to consider abandoning places that are becoming unlivable.
Today the temperature reached 120°F in Basrah-Hussen, Iraq, part of a region where extreme daytime heat is common. This area spanning parts of Iraq, Iran, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait frequently sees temperatures this high, combined with scarce rainfall.
Basra is located on the Arabian Peninsula on the Shatt-Al-Arab waterway, which runs into the Persian Gulf. It is also just north of the border of Kuwait. With a population of 1.3 million, it is the second-largest city in Iraq.
Today’s temperature is below Basrah’s record high of 129°F set on July 22, 2016.
Temperatures exceeding 110°F pose hazards to human health. As NBC News reports, when the body can no longer shed excess heat – a condition called heat stress – core temperature rises. This can lead to confusion, nausea, dizziness, headaches, or fainting.
The portion of the world that will be uninhabitable is growing. Basrah-Hussen is just one example of the problem. (This is the hottest day on record in every state.)
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