Heat Waves, the New Normal: Summertime Temperature Extremes Will Impact Animals, Ecosystems, and Human Communities

Physiology (Bethesda). 2019 Mar 1;34(2):86-100. doi: 10.1152/physiol.00040.2018.


A consequence of climate change is the increased frequency and severity of extreme heat waves. This is occurring now as most of the warmest summers and most intense heat waves ever recorded have been during the past decade. In this review, I describe the ways in which animals and human populations are likely to respond to increased extreme heat, suggest how to study those responses, and reflect on the importance of those studies for countering the devastating impacts of climate change.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Physiological*
  • Animals
  • Ecosystem*
  • Global Warming*
  • Hot Temperature
  • Humans
  • Infrared Rays*
  • Selection, Genetic