This essay investigates the urban heat island (UHI) phenomenon in Guangzhou, the commercial and manufacturing hub of southern China. Research and original fieldwork was carried out by Fleur Wang, a sixth form student in the British School of Guangzhou. Fieldwork involved using two transects that measured the difference in air temperature between SW-NE and E-W profiles of the city. Land uses in the city were also studied using Landsat satellite imagery. Results showed air temperature increased with high density urban built-up areas and decreased with vegetation cover in rural areas. Intensity of UHIs found were significant and varied from 2°C to 3.3°C, even when the weather conditions for UHIs were not optimal. The existence of UHIs remains a relevant global issue as over 50% of the world’s population now live in urban areas and methods of mitigation must be found to minimise its negative social, economic, and environmental effects.
The aim of my investigation is to study the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect in Guangzhou, the third most populated city in China. My alternative hypothesis is:
“the ambient air temperature will be highest in the city centre and lowest in the rural areas.”
My project objectives are:
• To determine if there is an urban heat island in Guangzhou, and where it is located
• To study the factors influencing urban heat islands
• To carry out primary and secondary research to draw my conclusions
The Urban Heat Island effect
(Source: http://icecap.us/images/uploads/URBAN_HEAT_ISLAND.pdf )
The urban heat island effect is simply the higher temperature found over and around an urban area. Heat islands are created by the increased absorption of heat by the materials of the buildings and roads. This...
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... CIE GCE Textbook, "Urban Climates"
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