Causes of the record-breaking Pacific Northwest heatwave, late June 2021
Advanced Search
Select up to three search categories and corresponding keywords using the fields to the right. Refer to the Help section for more detailed instructions.

Search our Collections & Repository

All these words:

For very narrow results

This exact word or phrase:

When looking for a specific result

Any of these words:

Best used for discovery & interchangable words

None of these words:

Recommended to be used in conjunction with other fields



Publication Date Range:


Document Data


Document Type:






Clear All

Add terms to the query box

Query box

Clear All

Causes of the record-breaking Pacific Northwest heatwave, late June 2021

Filetype[PDF-2.13 MB]


  • Journal Title:
  • Personal Author:
  • Description:
    The extreme heat event that hit the Pacific Northwest (Oregon, Washington, southern British Columbia) at the end of June 2021 was 3 °C greater than the previous Seattle record of 39 °C; larger extremes of 49 °C were observed further inland that were 6 °C above previous record. There were hundreds of deaths over the region and loss of marine life and forests. At the large scale prior to the event, the polar vortex was split over the Arctic. A polar vortex instability center formed over the Bering Sea and then extended southward along the west coast of North America. The associated tropospheric trough (low geopotential heights) established a multi-day synoptic scale Omega Block (west-east oriented low/high/low geopotential heights) centered over the Pacific Northwest. Warming was sustained in the region due to subsidence/adiabatic heating and solar radiation, which were the main reasons for such large temperature extremes. The seasonal transition at the end of spring suggests the possibility of a southern excursion of a polar vortex/jet stream pair. Both the Pacific Northwest event in 2021 and the Siberian heatwave climax in June 2020 may be examples of crossing a critical state in large-scale atmospheric circulation variability.
  • Source:
    Atmosphere, 12(11), 1434
  • Document Type:
  • Place as Subject:
  • Rights Information:
    CC BY
  • Compliance:
  • Main Document Checksum:
  • File Type:

Supporting Files

More +

You May Also Like

Checkout today's featured content at

Version 3.18