but the blue represents temperatures of -10 while the red tones
represent +10 temperatures and white represents normal.
For those who track their local temperatures using the Celsius scale, 40 degrees is a daunting number. In early February 2009, residents of southeastern
This map of
Land surface temperature is how hot the surface of the Earth would feel to the touch in a particular location. From a satellite’s point of view, the “surface” is whatever it sees when it looks through the atmosphere to the ground. That could be the sand on a beach, the grass on a lawn, the roof of a building, or a paved road. Thus, daytime land surface temperature is often much higher than the air temperature that is included in the daily weather report—a fact that anyone who has walked barefoot across a parking lot on a summer afternoon could verify.
The Australian Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) called this heat wave “exceptional,” not only for the high temperatures but for their duration. One-day records were broken in multiple cities, with temperatures in the mid-40s. In
Nighttime temperatures broke records, too. In their special statement on the heat wave, the BOM wrote, “On the morning of 29 January, an exceptional event also occurred in the northern suburbs of