Authors: Ming Luo*, Sun Yat-sen University
Topics: Global Change, Climatology and Meteorology, Hazards, Risks, and Disasters
Keywords: heat stress, heat index, long-term trend, urbanization effect, climate change, global warming
Session Type: Paper
Start / End Time: 3:05 PM / 4:45 PM
Room: Tyler, Marriott, Mezzanine Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded
A combination of hot temperature and high humidity (high heat stress) has severe impacts on environment, society, and public health, especially in urban areas where the majority of the world’s population lives. This study investigates the changes of heat stress in urban areas of eastern China and urbanization effects. Data for 242 urban areas and records from a dense network of nearly 2,000 stations are examined. All urban areas have experienced substantial increases in mean heat stress and the frequencies of extreme heat stress days and events during 1971−2014. The increases in human-perceived heat stress are even stronger than air temperature. Urban areas experience more intense heat stress than the surrounding rural areas. We estimate that urbanization accounts for nearly 30% of the increase in mean and extreme heat stress. Urbanization effects are more prominent in the major urban conglomerates such as Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei, and the Yangtze and Pearl River deltas.