The heat wave now battering much of the nation is centered on Oklahoma, where record heat and drought have crippled the state for the entire summer. With August on the way, there is no end in sight. The prolonged heat — Oklahoma City has been above 100°F for 30 days this summer — has probably killed over a dozen Oklahoma residents:
The sustained heat has taxed local water systems and claimed at least five lives, with another eight deaths possibly being caused by the heat, authorities said.
The oil-rich state is also the epicenter of global warming denial, led by its senior U.S. Senator, Jim Inhofe (R-OK). The oil-funded senator has a long history of finding humor in the misery caused by extreme weather disturbed by greenhouse pollution, including the record snowstorms of this winter. This deadly heat wave is no exception. In a tweet on Thursday, Inhofe’s press office mocked the killer heat, arguing that Al Gore could cool it off:
The tweet links to the Wikipedia page on “The Gore Effect,” which is the climate-denier claim that weather and appearances by Al Gore are linked. The claim, of course, lacks any sense whatsoever, but that’s never been a burden for Inhofe.