‘Statistically impossible’ heat extremes are here

Nicholas Leach in The Conversation:

In the summer of 2021, Canada’s all-time temperature record was smashed by almost 5℃. Its new record of 49.6℃ is hotter than anything ever recorded in Spain, Turkey or indeed anywhere in Europe.

The record was set in Lytton, a small village a few hours’ drive from Vancouver, in a part of the world that doesn’t really look like it should experience such temperatures.

Lytton was the peak of a heatwave that hit the Pacific Northwest of the US and Canada that summer and left many scientists shocked. From a purely statistical point of view, it should have been impossible.

More here.