The combination of extreme heat and drought that has scorched the Western United States and Canada over the past two weeks has killed hundreds of millions of mussels, clams and other marine animals, the New York Times reports. From a report: An estimated 1 billion small sea creatures died during the heat wave in the Salish Sea at the end of June, according to marine biologist Chris Harley, per the Washington Post. The sea creatures’ deaths coincide with the heat wave that hit the Pacific Northwest last week, which led to more than a hundred human deaths.
A study by an international team of climate researchers said the heat wave would have been “virtually impossible without human-caused climate change.” Mussels attach themselves to rocks and other surfaces, but they generally can’t survive temperatures over 100 degrees for extended periods of time, CNN reports.
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