The impact of heat mitigation strategies on the energy balance of a neighborhood in Los Angeles

Taleghani, M ORCID:, Crank, P, Mohegh, A, Sailor, D and Ban-Weiss, G 2018, 'The impact of heat mitigation strategies on the energy balance of a neighborhood in Los Angeles' , Solar Energy, 177 , pp. 604-611.

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Heat mitigation strategies can reduce excess heat in urban environments. These strategies, including solar reflective cool roofs and pavements, green vegetative roofs, and street vegetation, alter the surface energy balance to reduce absorption of sunlight at the surface and subsequent transfer to the urban atmosphere. The impacts of heat mitigation strategies on meteorology have been investigated in past work at the mesoscale and global scale. For the first time, we focus on the effect of heat mitigation strategies on the surface energy balance at the neighborhood scale. The neighborhood under investigation is El Monte, located in the eastern Los Angeles basin in Southern California. Using a computational fluid dynamics model to simulate micrometeorology at high spatial resolution, we compare the surface energy balance of the neighborhood assuming current land cover to that with neighborhood‐wide deployment of green roof, cool roof, additional trees, and cool pavement as the four heat mitigation strategies. Of the four strategies, adoption of cool pavements led to the largest reductions in net radiation (downward positive) due to the direct impact of increasing pavement albedo on ground level solar absorption. Comparing the effect of each heat mitigation strategy shows that adoption of additional trees and cool pavements led to the largest spatial‐maximum air temperature reductions at 14:00h (1.0 and 2.0 °C, respectively). We also investigate how varying the spatial coverage area of heat mitigation strategies affects the neighborhood‐scale impacts on meteorology. Air temperature reductions appear linearly related to the spatial extent of heat mitigation strategy adoption at the spatial scales and baseline meteorology investigated here.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > School of the Built Environment > Centre for Urban Processes, Resilient Infrastructures & Sustainable Environments
Journal or Publication Title: Solar Energy
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0038-092X
Related URLs:
Funders: US National Science Foundation, Rose Hills Foundation, The USC Provost’s Office
Depositing User: M Taleghani
Date Deposited: 29 Nov 2018 14:34
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2022 00:21

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