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Heat Island Effect Portal

This website provides information on the heat island effect, its impacts, and the strategies that communities can take to reduce urban temperatures. Look under the "Where You Live" section to see specific strategies and initiatives implemented by states and localities. Strategies fall into four primary categories: cool roofs, cool pavement, green roofs, and urban landscaping. Initiatives are specific policy mechanisms, such as building codes, comprehensive plans, demonstration projects, incentives, landscape ordinances, state implementation plans, and zoning codes.

Related Organizations: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Resource Category: Adaptation Websites

 

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Socioeconomic indicators of heat-related health risk supplemented with remotely sensed data

October 16, 2009

This study evaluates a potential method for determining localized risk from extreme heat events (EHEs) in urban environments by integrating socio-demographic risk factors with estimates of land surface temperature.  Methods that provide more spatially specific information may better inform planning and intervention in areas where increased prevalence of heat-related illness and EHEs are likely to occur.

Related Organizations: International Journal of Health Geographics

Authors or Affiliated Users: Daniel P. Johnson, Jeffrey S. Wilson, George C. Luber

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Adapting to Climate Change: Public Health

June 2009

This issue brief shares results from a climate adaptation research project conducted by Resources for the Future (RFF). The report describes the projected health consequences of climate change impacts, and offers strategies to mitigate some of these adverse effects on public health. 

Related Organizations: Resources for the Future (RFF)

Author or Affiliated User: Jonathan M. Samet

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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The Heat is On: Climate Change and Heatwaves in the Midwest

December 2007

This paper from the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (formerly the Pew Center on Global Climate Change) reviews the projected intensity and frequency of heat waves in the Midwestern United States for the 21st century, potential public health ramifications and related adaptation options. It is one of four case studies in an overall report, "Regional Impacts of Climate Change: Four Case Studies in the United States," that examines the impacts of particular interest to different regions of the U.

Related Organizations: National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), The Pew Center on Global Climate Change, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES)

Authors or Affiliated Users: Kris Ebi, Gerald A. Meehl

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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2014 Heatwave Business Impacts, City of Melbourne, Australia

March 24, 2014

The City of Melbourne, Australia conducted this study to get an understanding of the perceived impacts of a 2014 heatwave on the Melbourne business community. Melbourne has experienced several extreme heatwaves in recent years and climate projections show an increase in heatwaves in the future. This is a unique study because most research has been related to impacts of urban heat on the personal health of individuals, rather than impacts to businesses. 

Related Organizations: City of Melbourne, Australia

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Heat in U.S. Prisons and Jails: Corrections and the Challenge of Climate Change

August 31, 2015

This paper from the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law addresses how increased temperatures and heat waves caused by climate change affect prisons, jails, and their staff and inmate populations. Recommendations are offered for what correctional departments can do to prepare for greater heat and minimize the dangers it poses.  

Related Organizations: Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, Columbia Law School

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Great 2006 Heat Wave Over California and Nevada: Signal of an Increasing Trend

December 1, 2009

The July 2006 western heat wave is studied in the context of the region's climate over the past six decades. The study explores the possible connections between a heat wave trend and global warming and details the increased human health and ecosystems risks of night time extreme heat events. The authors describe the climatic behavior and regional causes of great heat waves over California and Nevada, and use this foundation to investigate whether and to what extent the 2006 event may be considered an aberration or a manifestation of a long term climatic change.

Related Organizations: California-Nevada Applications Program (CNAP) - RISA, Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Authors or Affiliated Users: Alexander Gershunov, Danial R. Cayan, Sam F. Iacobellis

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Heat in the Heartland: Climate Change and Economic Risk in the U.S.

January 23, 2015

From the Risky Business Project, “Heat in the Heartland” details how extreme heat from unmitigated climate change could transform the Midwest's communities and economy. This assessment defines the range of potential economic consequences on agriculture and businesses, as well as discusses the related impacts on labor productivity, livestock, energy use, public health, crime, fresh water supply and tourism. The report concludes that the most severe risks can still be avoided through early investments in resilience and immediate action to mitigate global warming.

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Climate and Health - Understanding the Risk: An Assessment of San Francisco’s Vulnerability to Extreme Heat Events

2013

The San Francisco Department of Public Health was awarded funding by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to conduct an environmental health assessment of vulnerability to heat waves and air quality. This report provides an overview of the health department’s study of heat distribution, and predictions of neighborhoods that are especially vulnerable to extreme heat in San Francisco, California. The assessment will inform climate change adaptation planning efforts including a heat wave disaster response plan.

Related Organizations: San Francisco Department of Public Health

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Louisville Urban Heat Management Study

April 2016

The Louisville, Kentucky Urban Heat Management Study assesses the degree to which the Louisville Metro area is warming as a result of urban development and deforestation. The first of its kind by a major U.S. city, this report educates neighborhood and city decision makers on the impacts that rising temperatures have on public health, and provides recommendations for addressing Louisville’s urban heat problem.

Related Organizations: City of Louisville, Kentucky

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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