It’s not yet the first day of summer and several cities in Indiana have already had multiple days above 90 degrees. Climate experts say average summer temperatures are rising in the U.S. — including in Indiana.
According to the independent research and reporting collaboration Climate Central, Indiana cities studied had an average of six more days last summer where temperatures were above normal compared to 1970. Indianapolis had the most with 12 days.
Hotter summers can lead to poorer air quality and more heat-related illnesses. Children, seniors, outdoor workers, people with chronic health conditions, and lower-income Hoosiers who can’t afford air conditioning are especially susceptible.
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Cities — which tend to have more hard surfaces and less green space — are often hotter than surrounding areas. Some Indiana cities like Richmond and Clarksville are working to find out how they can provide services to residents in the hottest areas of their cities and work to cool those areas down.
Indiana environmental reporting is supported by the Environmental Resilience Institute, an Indiana University Grand Challenge project developing Indiana-specific projections and informed responses to problems of environmental change.