Temperature Increase


In late June, the average high temperature in Venice Beach is a crisp 69°F.  If there is a strong onshore breeze, beachgoers are often found swathed in sweaters.  Across the Hollywood Hills in Burbank, the average high is 84°F, ideal for wearing shorts and dining al fresco.  Further inland on the other side of the San Gabriel Mountains in Lancaster, the average rises to 95°F.  Air conditioning – at home, in the car, at work – is the preferred option.  On June 30, 2013, Lancaster set a all-time high record of 115°F while Venice luxuriated in a relatively balmy 86°F.

Models predict that climate change will raise temperatures roughly 4.6°F averaged over the Los Angeles region.  All locations in the County are most likely to warm.  However, the increase will differ by topographic location – high elevations and inland areas separated from the coast by at least one mountain complex are projected to warm 20-50% more than the coast.  This warming contrast between coastal and inland zones has a large effect on the most likely expected number of extremely hot days per year: 2-3 times greater in locations along the coast and in the Los Angeles basin, and 3-5 times greater at high elevations and inland areas.  The record high recently set in Lancaster may not last long.

Why It Matters

  • Mortality from heat waves
  • Increased wildfire risk
  • Transportation damage (trains, pavement, etc)
  • Health- air quality (more spores in the air, lower-level/ground level ozone)
  • Increase in vector-borne diseases (very sensitive to rainfall, temperature and humidity)
  • Increase for food-borne illness, especially for seafood