Those hoping to minimize the effects of climate change must not overlook local urban parks as an important tool in the effort.
Clement Lau, a Los Angeles County planner, discusses how communities can use local and regional parks for carbon sequestration and to offset the urban heat island effect.
“Parks are the first and best line of defense against the urban heat island effect, and its mostly negative consequences of modified temperature, precipitation, wind, and air quality patterns. In particular, urban parks cool and clean the air, improve and modify local wind circulations, and better regulate precipitation patterns.”
Lau highlights various park projects the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation ((DPR) has in the works and has completed to help ease the effects of climate change.
“…DPR has been proactively and progressively addressing these challenges through its planning, design,construction, and renovation projects and practices.”
Clement also lists numerous reference documents and manuals used by Los Angeles County but helpful to any municipality in designing their parks for maximum climate change impact.