A groundbreaking climate change study, which contains data 2,500 times more detailed than previous studies, predicts weather patterns from 2041 to 2060 in the Los Angeles region. Findings show that the region is expected to heat by an average of 4 to 5 degrees Fahrenheit by the middle of this century.
This implies tripling the number of extremely hot days (temperatures above 95 degrees Fahrenheit) in the downtown area and quadrupling the number in the valleys and at high elevations.
“The changes our region will face are significant, and we will have to adapt,” said Alex Hall, an associate professor in UCLA’s Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences who lead the study and who is also a lead author on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports, which, among other things, assess global climate-change simulations for the United Nations.“Every season of the year in every part of the county will be warmer,” Hall said. “This study lays a foundation for the region to confront climate change. Now that we have real numbers, we can talk about adaptation.”
“UCLA’s model projects climate changes down to the neighborhood level, allowing us to apply the rigor of science to long-term planning for our city and our region,” said Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa in a statement. “With good data driving good policies, we can craft innovative solutions that will preserve our environment and quality of life for the next generation of Angelenos.”
Global warming is local warming
“I think for many people, climate change still feels like a nebulous, abstract, potential future change, and this makes it more real,” Hall said. “It’s eye-opening to see how much it will warm where you live. This data lays a foundation for really confronting this issue, and I’m very optimistic that we can confront and adapt to a changing climate.”