SCIENTISTS ARE BAFFLED BY THE CONTINUOUS HEAT
Conditions in Europe More Severe than in the United State
Conditions Here Declared To Be The Warmest Since 1901, But Europe Has Had No Such Weather in the Last 50 Years.
(BY H. B. HUNT)
WASHINGTON, July 19. - Uncle Sam's weather experts are stumped.
The hot wave prevailing not only throughout the United States, but the whole of the north and south temperate zones, is, they declare, without rhyme, rule or reason.
While the United States has been in the grip of a heat wave not equated since 1901, England and Europe have been sweltering in temperatures greater than have been known for 50 years.
Alpine glaciers, dissolving under the abnormal heat, have swollen mountain streams to raging torrents.
In other sections, streams have dried up, wells gone dry and crops are parched.
Grazing lands are burned dry and stock raisers, without forage and with little water for their animals are desperate.
Fires have caused large damage in many European forests. Inhabitants of villages scattered through the famous forest of Fontainbleau, near Paris, refuse to go to bed for fear fires, many of which have been put out by desperate efforts, will sweep the great wood.
"We have not been able to identify any exact causes for the conditions," says Dr. Charles F. Marvin, chief of the government Weather Bureau.
"There is no provable relations between the weather and sunspots, although sunspots are blamed by some. Sunspots occur and recur at intervals, but it never has been possible to identify them as exerting a definite influence on weather.
"The most exact measurements of solar radiation reveal little if any change in temperature due to them. As a matter of fact, however, we are now passing through a period when sunspots are at the minimum.
"Neither is there any basis for ascribing unusual conditions of weather to earthquakes. It would be just as logical to ascribe earthquakes to unusual weather influences. There is no established proof either way."
One of the most unusual features of present world weather conditions, Marvin said, is the similarity of conditions in America and Europe.
"Usually," he said, "they do not run parallel. When we have a hot summer in the United States, it generally is cool in Europe. When it hot in Europe, it normally is cool here. But the present hot weather seems general throughout the temperate zones.
"What it is due to, no one can say with any degree of assurance."
An examination of Weather Bureau charts covering the past few weeks, show a temperate averaging 10 to 12 degrees above normal in the Great Lakes region, the Dakotas and Minnesota, and from 5 to 8 degrees above for the remainder of the central states and the Atlantic and Pacific coasts.
Only one section, comprising Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexia, has been below normal.
Compared to the summer of 1901, when mercury stuck above 100 degrees in Mississippi valley states for over 20 days, the present summer has been a balmy, pleasant and exhilarating one.
Mt. Vernon Register-News
Mt. Vernon, Illinois
Tuesday, July 19, 1921