By Kelly

For our readers in the Northern Hemisphere you may not have heard, but it’s really hot here at the moment. For our readers closer to home, crazy isn’t it?! And just in case you don’t quite believe me, it’s so hot right now that the Bureau of Meteorology’s head of climate monitoring and prediction announced yesterday that a new colour code is needed at the high-end of the scale to capture Monday’s predicted temperatures.

Welcome to the era of hot (quite literally) pink!

The barometer in certain parts of Australia is predicted to exceed 50C,  toppling the current 50.7C record maximum temperature, set in Oodnadatta South Australia in 1960!

Here at the ANU, we received an announcement from our VC that coastal regions and some of Canberra’s surrounds had reached a fire warning of ‘catastrophic’ (here in Australia we don’t just do ‘extreme’ we do ‘catastrophic’). Once Canberra reaches ‘catastrophic’ fire danger we start to close down sections of the university’s off- campus laboratories, and consider our evacuation plans. Over 100 fires are blazing in New South Wales and thousands of people evacuated in Tasmania after record temperatures were consistently broken across the nation last week. With more record temperatures predicted for next week I think we need to do more than assess our current evacuation plans, and start to assess why we keep committing to increased warming and the consequent extreme weather events.

I’m not sure about you, but I’ve never been a fan of hot pink.

For more on our continuing heat wave and bushfires, click here, or see the kottke article that came my way this morning here (language warning though!).