Title: Modelling the seasonal dependency of contributions to urban heat islands in Belgium
Authors: Wouters, Hendrik
Demuzere, Matthias
De Ridder, Koen
Blahak, Ulrich
Van Lipzig, Nicole
Issue Date: 21-Jul-2015
Conference: International Conference on Urban Climate edition:9 location:Toulouse date:19-24 july 2015
Abstract: The seasonal dependency of the urban heat island (UHI) intensity and its climatic drivers at the mid-latitudes are addressed with model-based sensitivity experiments over Belgium. Hereby, simulations with TERRA_URB is coupled to COSMO-CLM over Belgium are performed for the summer of 2012 and the subsequent winter showing a good agreement of the seasonal, daily and diurnal variability of the UHI intensity of cities in Belgium. It is a common perception that the presence of the urban fabric (UF) characterized by a scarseness in vegetation and the presence of streets and buildings is the overall dominant driver of the UHI intensity. Yet, additional sensitivity experiments with COSMO-CLM coupled to TERRA_URB clearly show that the impact of both the UF, the anthropogenic heat emission (AHE), and the synergy between those two impacts determine the seasonal dependency of the UHI intensity. Remarkably, the averaged contribution of the UF to the nocturnal boundary-layer UHI for the cities in and around Belgium (+0.45 K for Brussels) during winter is smaller than that from the AHE (+1.27 K). Conversely, the contribution of the UF (+1.97 K) dominates that of the AHE (+0.84 K) during summer. The respective contributions counteract each other during summer (−0.33 K), whereas they slightly enhance each other during winter (+0.15 K). Within the general assessment of global climate change projections, land-use change scenarios and urban-climate mitigation and adaptation, we recommend to account for each of these effects and their implications at every season.
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IMa
Appears in Collections:Division of Geography & Tourism

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