Chart: Number of 1995-like Chicago Heat Waves

Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States 2009 Report

Over the last three decades of this century, heat waves like the one that occurred in Chicago in 1995 are projected to occur about once every three years under the lower emissions scenario. Under the even higher emissions scenario, such events are projected to occur an average of nearly three times a year. In this analysis, heat waves were defined as at least one week of daily maximum temperatures greater than 90°F and nighttime minimum temperatures greater than 70°F, with at least two consecutive days with daily temperatures greater than 100°F and nighttime temperatures greater than 80°F.