How the Phoenix Tree Canopy Affects Urban Temperatures

As extreme weather intensifies, cities are using trees to mitigate the effects of climate change and reduce energy consumption.

September 27, 2021, 8:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction


Rather than seeing trees simply as a form of beautification, writes Joss Fong, it's time to acknowledge their role as "a living form of infrastructure, providing services that include stormwater management, air filtering, carbon sequestration, and, most importantly for a city like Phoenix, Arizona, they cool the environment around them."

With extreme heat waves happening with increasing frequency, Sun Belt cities like Phoenix are exploring a variety of ways to cool their urban cores and reduce energy demand during the summer months. "Phoenix recently pledged to reach 'tree equity' by 2030, under an agreement with American Forests, a national tree organization."

This video from Vox uses drone imagery and thermal cameras to show "how the urban design of the city contributes to extreme heat, and what it can do to cool down."

Monday, September 20, 2021 in Vox

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