A ‘once-in-200 years’ heat wave caught Southeast Asia off guard. Climate change will make them more common by CNN

This piece explores recent and alarming data showing this year’s record-breaking extreme heat in Southeast Asia. April and May are typically the hottest months of the year there, as temperatures rise before monsoon rains bring some relief. But in 2023, they reached levels never experienced before in most countries of the region, including tourism hotspots Thailand and Vietnam. 

Acknowledging public fatigue with continuous climate crisis news, our approach combined data and firsthand stories. On one hand, data visualizations allowed us to put the issue of heat waves on a scale and offer a simplified understanding of the complex phenomenon of climate change. On the other hand, personal testimonies demonstrated how people are adapting and finding solutions, providing content that readers can relate to and feel involved in.

One moped driver in Hanoi, Vietnam told CNN: “If I get a heatstroke, I would be forced to suspend driving to recover,” said Phong, who declined to give his last name. “But I cannot afford it.”