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Arizona State University (2011)

Microscale Modeling Of The Canopy-Layer Urban Heat Island In Phoenix, Arizona : Validation And Sustainable Mitigation Scenarios

Chow, Winston T.L.

Titre : Microscale Modeling Of The Canopy-Layer Urban Heat Island In Phoenix, Arizona : Validation And Sustainable Mitigation Scenarios

Auteur : Chow, Winston T.L.

Université de soutenance : Arizona State University

Grade : Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) Geography 2011

Résumé
Metropolitan Phoenix, Arizona, is one of the most rapidly urbanizing areas in the U.S., which has resulted in an urban heat island (UHI) of substantial size and intensity. Several detrimental biophysical and social impacts arising from the large UHI has posed, and continues to pose, a challenge to stakeholders actively engaging in discussion and policy formulation for a sustainable desert city. There is a need to mitigate some of its detrimental effects through sustainable methods, such as through the application of low-water, desert-adapted low-water use trees within residential yards (i.e. urban xeriscaping). This has the potential to sustainably reduce urban temperatures and outdoor thermal discomfort in Phoenix, but evaluating its effectiveness has not been widely researched in this city or elsewhere. Hence, this dissertation first evaluated peer-reviewed literature on UHI research within metropolitan Phoenix and discerned several major themes and factors that drove existing research trajectories. Subsequently, the nocturnal cooling influence of an urban green-space was examined through direct observations and simulations from a microscale climate model (ENVI-Met 3.1) with an improved vegetation parameterization scheme. A distinct park cool island (PCI) of 0.7-3.6 °C was documented from traverse and model data with larger magnitudes closer to the surface. A key factor in the spatial expansion of PCI was advection of cooler air towards adjacent urban surfaces, especially at 0-1 m heights. Modeled results also possessed varying but reasonable accuracy in simulating temperature data, although some systematic errors remained. Finally, ENVI-Met generated xeriscaping scenarios in two residential areas with different surface vegetation cover (mesic vs. xeric), and examined resulting impacts on near-surface temperatures and outdoor thermal comfort. Desert-adapted low-water use shade trees may have strong UHI mitigation potential in xeric residential areas, with greater cooling occurring at (i.) microscales ( 2.5 °C) vs. local-scales ( 1.1 °C), and during (ii.) nocturnal (0500 h) vs. daytime periods (1700 h) under high xeriscaping scenarios. Conversely, net warming from increased xeriscaping occurred over mesic residential neighborhoods over all spatial scales and temporal periods. These varying results therefore must be considered by stakeholders when considering residential xeriscaping as a UHI mitigation method

Mots Clés : Geography / Meteorology / Urban Climatology / Urban Heat Island / Urban Meteorology

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