While I'm not planning any visits to Death Valley this Summer (or any Summer), regarding recorded temperatures in Death Valley for the past 100 years, Wikipedia notes (emphasis added): Note the two 1913 records. This is the problem with 100 years of record keeping. While rapid climate change is occurring, IMHO we really don't have the 1,000,000 years of data kept by electronic devices we need to create a "proof" satisfactory to me in any "scientific" analysis. There are some fairly well supported working hypotheses that make me a believer about human activities releasing carbon dioxide and methane speeding along a trend which might or might not have occurred if dinosaurs (the dominant terrestrial vertebrates for 135 million years) ruled the Earth for the past 10,000,000 years. The human use of fire appears to have begun about 1,000,000 years ago per Wikipedia. All of this is a matter of perspective. The Roman Empire lasted about 500 years or (800 years depending on whether you think the Republic's first expansion period counts). The British Empire lasted less than 400 years. If you accept the beginning of the American Empire with the Mexican-American War, climate change may limit us to 200± years of cultural and technological domination. Or perhaps Yellowstone will explode next week. As National Geographic researchers have noted: "The ensuing volcanic winter may have contributed to a period of global cooling that reduced the entire human population to a few thousand individuals—a close shave for the human race." Just think, Earth's creatures could have avoided this particular current accelerated climate change crisis altogether. Of course, if you're a Russian scientist you may not be thinking of this as a crisis at all.