Sacramento: record of 114 degrees Fahrenheit on Monday

California roasts at record high temperatures as the heatwave continues.

 Records of high temperatures continued to fall across California on Tuesday as the most brutal heat wave of 2022 peaked, providing a grim preview of what climate change has in store for the American West.

After setting a September record of 114 degrees Fahrenheit on Monday, Sacramento, the capital of California, was forecast to hit 115 degrees Fahrenheit on Tuesday, matching an all-time high. Fairfield, a town northeast of the San Francisco Bay Area, broke an all-time high on Monday, hitting 117 degrees Fahrenheit. San Jose, with a population of more than one million, was expected to reach 108 degrees Fahrenheit on Tuesday.

"This will be the worst September heat wave on record in Northern California," climate scientist Daniel Swain said in a Twitter briefing.

Computer models showed that high temperatures were possible in northern California, where the heatwave that began over the weekend is expected to peak. 

"It could be above 110 degrees in parts of Northern California through Friday," Swain said.

With air conditioners turned on and residents seeking shelter from the heat indoors, California's power grid is struggling to meet demand. The state's autonomous system operator, which manages the power grid, declared a phase two emergency on Monday night but avoided starting a blackout.

"We have now entered the most intense phase of this heat wave," Elliott Mainzer, ISO President and CEO said Monday. "The likelihood of periodic outages has increased significantly."

A power outage remains possible on Tuesday, and the Flex Alert — a call for voluntary electrical rationing — will remain in effect as of 4 p.m. At 10 p.m., the Sacramento B. Residents were asked to avoid using major appliances during that time, keep the thermostat set to 78 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, and delay charging for electric vehicles.

Many Republicans opposed to California's move to ban gasoline cars by 2035 argue that voluntary restrictions on electric vehicle charging prove such goals are unrealistic.

However, climate scientists note that burning fossil fuels in cars, homes, and power plants are to blame for the number of extreme heat waves around the world and has led to an average summer temperature rise in California of 3 degrees since the early 1970s. To keep temperatures from rising dramatically, a mountain of scientific research has concluded that humanity will need to transition quickly from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources.

On Saturday, California Governor Gavin Newsom acknowledged the difficulty of keeping pace with energy needs as global warming continues to cause temperatures to rise. Still, he targeted states like Texas for sticking to policies that could worsen it.

"In Texas, so far, they've consumed about 22.9 million tons of coal, polluting the planet, making conditions worse, affecting the climate, and exacerbating the very conditions they're trying to mitigate in terms of their energy reliability versus California," Newsom said in a video statement. "It only consumed 18,000 people."

Because of the scorching temperatures, the risk of forest fires has risen dramatically. Two major fires in Siskiyou County near the Oregon border have killed two people, destroyed more than 100 homes, and forced thousands to evacuate.

On Monday, two people were killed in a southern California fire near the city of Hemet in Riverside County.

In the days before several record-breaking temperatures, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection urged residents to avoid outbreaks of fires that could quickly spiral out of control, given the severe heat and drought conditions that have plagued the state all summer.

The dangers of extreme heat are not limited to fire. The National Weather Service has repeatedly warned of health risks from drought.

"Extreme heat will significantly increase the likelihood of heat-related illness, especially for those who work or participate in outdoor activities," the National Weather Service said in a bulletin. "[There is] a very high risk of heat stress or disease for the entire population."

California is not alone in experiencing the latest thermal dome that has descended over the region. On Tuesday, nearly 52 million people in six states were exposed to severe heat warnings and alerts.

Swain said, or even just ca. "Regions from British Columbia to Mexico have seen their highest levels ever."

Research has shown that climate change has caused temperatures to rise in heat waves between 3 degrees Fahrenheit to 5 degrees Fahrenheit. "In many cases, this is the difference between a nonstandard and a nonstandard heat," Swain said.

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