Up to a dozen cities will heat up so much, their summers will have no analog currently on Earth. Khartoum, Sudan’s average summer temperature is projected to skyrocket to 111.4°F (44.1°C) if carbon pollution continues unchecked. That shift underscores that unless carbon pollution is curbed, the planet could be headed toward a state humans have never experienced.
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Reducing carbon emissions still means temperatures will rise in cities (and everywhere else). In Khartoum, moderate cuts mean the city’s summer average high is projected to top out at 106.9°F (41.6°C), a high that is still hot (as hot as Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to be exact) but at least of-this-planet hot.
Dealing with less extreme heat makes adaptation easier and less expensive, and given that choice, perhaps it’s no surprise cities are leading the charge on climate change. They face the worst impacts of extreme heat and are home to billions. That’s why thousands of mayors from around the world have banded together and pledged to reduce their emissions. That includes multitudes of US cities committing to meet the Paris Agreement goals after President Trump announced he was pulling the US from the pact, and even more ambitious moves like Oslo’s pledge to nearly zero its emissions by 2030.
WMO and Climate Central are launching a series of climate reports by TV weather presenters from across the world. The first videos are from Barcelona, Madrid and Hanoi. Others will roll out in the coming weeks.
Climate Central's James Bronzan contributed data analysis for this story.