I noticed we had a heat wave on St Patricks day when my beer got warm before I could finish drinking it.

On the heels of its warmest winter in 80 years, it stands to reason that Chicago can also celebrate its warmest month of March on record.

According to the Chicago Weather Center, temperatures in Chicago over the course of March have been nearly 16 degrees above normal

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/31/chicagos-warmest-march-ev_n_1393781.html

 

Chicago, Ill. tied or set new daily record highs nine days in a row from March 14-22! In this streak, eight of the days were in the 80s, including an astounding 87-degree highon March 21.

http://www.weather.com/outlook/weather-news/news/articles/perspective-march-record-warmth_2012-03-22

What is the weather like now?

 

Thursday and Friday are expected to reach 100 degrees, the weather service said. Thursday is expected to be intensely hot and humid, with hazy, partly cloudy skies. A record high temperature could be reached on Thursday, since the record high, set in 1911, is 102 degrees, and high temperatures Thursday could be as high as 104 degrees. Peak afternoon heat index readings could be between 110 to 115 degrees.

http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/13585413-418/happy-fourth-chicago-it-could-be-one-of-the-hottest-holidays-ever.html

Lets now look at Chicago’s 1995 heat wave where 750 died of heat related causes

 

Chicago’s daily low and high temperatures in 1995:

  • July 11: 73–90 °F (23–32 °C)
  • July 12: 76–98 °F (24–37 °C)
  • July 13: 81–106 °F (27–41 °C)
  • July 14: 84–102 °F (29–39 °C)
  • July 15: 77–99 °F (25–37 °C)
  • July 16: 76–94 °F (24–34 °C)
  • July 17: 73–89 °F (23–32 °C)

Only 2 days above 100 granted we had more humidity, we had power failure’s from so many people turning on the AC that even the state with the most nuclear power stations in AMerica could not keep up with the power demand.

We also had a Mayor who only came up with a plan to respond to the heat on the last day of the heat wave. We had 6 cooling centers in the city but they were under utilized. Rahm should take heed.

On the other hand the number of dead is low balled because the city was not listing cause of death from heat in many cases. The number who died is estimated from the above average number of deaths that week this at best gives us a solid low number.

It should be noted that many of the daily  heat records we have been beating this year were set in the 1990′s, the late 80′s and the Dust Bowl years.

On any given day we might not have record heat but this many continuous hot days I think we are at a yearly record. It is taking all of recorded weather history to find one day warmer than the days we have today.

The Weatherpeople keep saying we were close to a record heat today but there was one day back in X that was hotter.

But notice two things the 1995 heat wave started july 11 we are not yet at our hot season yet middle of July until the middle of August. So if its been this now it should get worse.

Second the 1995 heat wave shows us that humidity kills people. The Dust Bowl shows us lack of rain kills plants.

I don’t like either scenario.

So far this year we have had a very dry spring and summer  unless we get a ton of rain soon after we get the 100 degree days we Thursday and Friday our crops mostly corn and soybeans will be hurt. Corn is feed to many meat producing animals so expect meat prices to rise later on in the year.

 

What causes riots? That’s not a question you would expect to have a simple answer.

But today, Marco Lagi and buddies at the New England Complex Systems Institute in Cambridge, say they’ve found a single factor that seems to trigger riots around the world.

This single factor is the price of food. Lagi and co say that when it rises above a certain threshold, social unrest sweeps the planet.

The evidence comes from two sources. The first is data gathered by the United Nations that plots the price of food against time, the so-called food price index of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the UN.

http://www.technologyreview.com/view/425019/the-cause-of-riots-and-the-price-of-food/

Researchers are also debating if crime actually decreases once temperatures get oppressively hot. A 1997 Florida State University study highlighted by Wired.com concluded that around 80 degrees, people start retreating inside their air-conditioned homes, with violence dropping as a result. A 2005 Iowa State study disagrees, concluding that the higher the temperature, the more assaults. In the study, author Craig A. Anderson examined assault statistics from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m., the time when most adults are out of work or school. During this time period, Anderson claims, assaults continued to increase as the mercury climbs.

http://www.spillman.com/blog/2012/05/investigating-the-connection-between-hot-weather-and-crime/

While question of does heat increase violent crime is still a question Mayor Rahm has had a murder spree to deal with that is being compared to the Crack Wars of the Reagan years.