A NASA Scientist Confirms That Yes, Summers are Hotter Than Ever Before

"Man, it's a hot one" is more than just a lyric from the 1999 smash hit "Smooth" by Santa featuring Rob Thomas. It's practically become scientific consenus. 

If you thought the brutal summers were just in your head, rest assured—a retired NASA scientist is confirming that yes, we're having some of the hottest summers ever.

The New York Times reports these hot summers are "the kind that were virtually unheard-of in the 1950s."

In a piece posted on Friday, The New York Times also provides a graph based on the findings of retired NASA climate scientist James Hansen.

Dr. Hansen and researchers were able to create a bell curve using the range of 1951-1980 as the "base period," and placing summers in the Northern Hemisphere on scales of "cold" "normal" and "hot."

But starting in 2005, a new category needed to be created: "extremely hot."

"Between 2005 and 2015, two-thirds of summers were in the hot category," The Times reports, "while nearly 15 percent were in a new category: extremely hot. Practically, that means most summers today are either hot or extremely hot compared to the mid-20th century."

summer bell curve

We've already seen record-breaking temperatures in the Southwest so far.

As ATTN: previously reported, temperatures in the Southwestern U.S. threatened historical records and prompted flight cancelations. ATTN: also reported Arizona temperatures in June were so brutal (with highs of 120 degrees), mail boxes, trash cans, and street signs began to melt

If you're not currently living in a place with extreme summer weather, that doesn't mean climate change is a myth. Dr. Todd Sanford, director of research at Climate Central, said of Dr. Hansen's data it's, "a glimpse to what’s in our future."

Time to load up on sunscreen.