Seven of the eight fastest warming cities in the nation are in the West. And Reno tops the list. This is based on a study by The Weather Channel and Climate Central, an organization that studies the impact of climate change.
Speaking with our public radio partner KNPR in Las Vegas is Alyson Kenward, who is one of the study’s researchers. She says a contributing factor is increased urbanization.
“So when you have more impenetrable surfaces, more cement, more asphalt, that can hold the heat in longer,” Kenward explains. “You know what it’s like when you’re standing a dark road surface and it really sort of absorbs a lot of heat and it feels really hot?” That’s what’s going on.”
Kenward says cities also have less vegetation to cool things down, but the main problem is greenhouse gas emissions. Along with Reno, Phoenix and Las Vegas are also among the fastest warming cities. The temps have gone up in those spots at least five degrees in the last 50 years.