centers. A final component of urban climate resilience entails the energy conservation and efficiency strategies effective in reducing waste heat emissions from fuel combustion and building climate control. Characterized as “carbon cooling” due to the potential for energy reduction programs to address both the local and global drivers of climate change, such strategies are the most common approach to climate management at the urban scale today. Carbon cooling strategies prioritize emission control techniques that carry the associated benefits of climate change adaptation in cities. Such “adaptive mitigation” projects represent a critical linkage between climate management policy at the regional and global levels.

In response to the organizing theme of the meeting, a number of meteorological data needs are suggested by the presentation. The first and most pressing of these is the need for a more dense array of first-order meteorological stations in and in proximity to urban areas. Data on heat island trends is unavailable for many large metropolitan regions due to the absence of a continuous and reliable temperature record at a minimum number of rural sites in proximity to urban centers.

A second data need and one related to the first are improved methods for assessing the extent to which rural meteorological stations are subject to the impacts of local land use change. Nonstandard siting of instrumentation and significant changes to rural land cover, such as resulting from nearby deforestation or agricultural activities, have been found to be a significant influence on rural temperature trends used for baseline development in heat island research. Enhanced evaluation and enforcement of siting requirements across all meteorological stations is needed to improve the reliability of urban and rural climate trends that are increasingly significant to public health.

Finally, higher resolution modeling tools are needed to assess the combined impacts of global and micro-scale climate drivers on extreme heat in cities. At present, downscaling methods employed with global circulation models support a maximum resolution that is often too coarse for integration with meso and microscale climate models that are most responsive to urban land use conditions.

The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement