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Urban EcologyPatterns, Processes, and Applications$
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Jari Niemelä, Jürgen H. Breuste, Thomas Elmqvist, Glenn Guntenspergen, Philip James, and Nancy E. McIntyre

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199563562

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199563562.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 22 October 2021

Urban Climate

Urban Climate

(p.31) Chapter 1.2 Urban Climate
Urban Ecology

Eberhard Parlow

Oxford University Press

The urban climate is strongly modified by human activities. Most meteorological variables like temperature, heat stress, air pollution, and wind are influenced by human activity. First, the physical boundary conditions of radiation and heat budget are discussed in detail in the chapter. The urban system differs largely from agricultural or forest sites and especially the storage heat flux is modifying the urban heat budget significantly. One well known and often discussed phenomenon of the urban climate is the urban heat island effect (UHI). The urban climate has many aspects of modifying the impacts for biological growth by increasing the vegetation period or the modifications of the chemical composition of the urban atmosphere. Particulate matter (PM 10 and PM 2.5) is influencing human health and has consequences even for defining the legal thresholds for atmospheric pollutants in environmental laws. Especially in developing countries and mega-cities this problems gains increasing importance. At least since the great heat wave of 2003 the urban climate has gained much consideration on the political agenda. In the year of great heat stress in many European countries the mortality rate of humans increased significantly. This becomes important because it is assumed that due to the future global climate change the frequency of the 2003 conditions of heat stress will increase dramatically.

Keywords:   urban climate, urban heat island, particulate matter, urban atmosphere, environmental laws

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