All posts tagged: lowest heat risk

Why People Won’t Stop Moving to the Sun Belt

Why People Won’t Stop Moving to the Sun Belt

When it gets hot enough, as it has across the South in recent weeks, barefoot toddlers suffer second-degree burns from stepping onto concrete. People who fall on the blistering pavement wind up with skin grafts. Kids stay inside all day, “trying to survive.” Windshield wipers glue themselves in place, and the ocean transfers heat back into your body. One electric blackout could bake thousands to death inside their homes. You would think people would flee such a hellscape expeditiously. But as record-breaking heat fries the Sun Belt, the region’s popularity only grows. The numbers, laid out recently in The Economist, are striking: 12 of the 15 fastest-growing cities in the U.S. are in the Sun Belt. Of the top 50 zip codes that saw the largest increases in new residents since the start of the pandemic, 86 percent were in blazing-hot Texas, Florida, and Arizona. To be sure, during the pandemic people also moved to a few relatively cool cities in Idaho, Utah, and Colorado. But hot places overwhelmingly dominate nearly every ranking of population …