John Metcalfe was CityLab’s Bay Area bureau chief, covering climate change and the science of cities.
Commence fainting... now.
It's hot out there: 99 degrees in Chicago, 102 in St. Louis, 106 in Taylorville, Illinois. Upper nineties and triple-digit temps in the Midwest are astoundingly common, thanks to a lazy blob of high pressure sprawled over the midsection of America. In Washington, D.C., faces will melt in Saturday's "feels-like" heat index of up to 112 degrees, a forecast the local emergency alert system has already referred to as "torrid."
Nights with poor-functioning A/C mean humans toss and turn in a sweaty bath like slick 7-Eleven hotdogs. The sidewalks are hazy with filthy clouds of cooked-garbage stank. To celebrate America's record-breaking heat wave, here's a look at climate-related aspects of eight cities that make us most miserable in the summer. Commence fainting... now.