Experts Say Valley Is Hot

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Despite how it may appear at first glance, this is not a happy-faced editorial.

It is a joyfully smug-faced editorial.

Item: According to this morning's Arizona Republic, climate experts have determined that metro Phoenix is "the world's foremost urban heat island."

For the benefit of those Rim country residents who are not Phoenix-Mesa-Tempe transplants, what this scientific discovery means is that the wilting effects of the Arizona sun are magnified to a scorching degree by the Valley's zillion acres of asphalt, concrete and tile roofs.

The most incredible aspect of this deduction, you'll surely agree, is that someone was paid good money to deduce it.

Another woefully unsurprising climate-expert discovery is that, since 1949, the average low temperature at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport has risen more than 10 degrees. And that since 1962, the number of hours per day which exceed 100 degrees has nearly doubled.

Here's one more revelation: Those areas of Phoenix with the greatest number of trees and grass and vegetation can be up to 10 degrees cooler than the rest of the town.

Unsurprising, yes. But you've got to admit, those numbers are absolutely wonderful to peruse in Payson, on your front porch, as a 73-degree breeze wishes you 'Good morning!' and you consider going inside to grab a light sweater.

For the benefit of those Valley residents who have yet to transplant to the Rim country, a sweater is a knitted garment worn on the upper torso for increased bodily warmth.

We're done being joyfully smug-faced. And we promise not to indulge in such behavior again ... at least until some air-quality expert deduces that the Valley's pollution problems are somehow related to automobile traffic.

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