London’s urban centre has the joint-fourth most extreme urban heat island (UHI) “hot spot” of six major cities around the world, with temperatures 4.5°C hotter than rural surroundings, according to new research by global sustainable development consultancy, Arup.
The report, Urban Heat Snapshot, analyses AI and satellite images from space using Arup’s urban heat modelling tool, UHeat. Mapping the most extreme “hot spots” in a 150km2 sample of the urban centres from London, Cairo, Los Angeles, Madrid, Mumbai and New York, the snapshot is among the first international UHI international comparisons using both day and night-time datasets.
UHeat draws on an advanced climate model by the University of Reading in the UK and demonstrates how advanced digital tools can bring academic models to real-word scenarios and examine the causes of the UHI effect. It can then rapidly model solutions to show how the strategic deployment of nature and other interventions can help cities reduce the impact of hot spots.