New York City was some 10°C hotter than local countryside during 2016 heatwaves

A study revealing the intensity of the “urban heat island” effect has prompted its US-based authors to say that more should be done to improve our understanding of coastal urban climates.

In heatwaves in July 2016, temperatures in New York City sometimes soared 10°C higher than the local countryside, according to the study by Prathap Ramamurthy and others at the City College of New York. Their research also revealed that New York’s heat island has internal boundary layers, which current weather models are unable to predict, according to the authors.

The study “challenges our current models that are overwhelmingly used to predict environmental flows in complex coastal urban areas,” said Ramamurthy. “Secondly, it shows that megacities like New York are highly vulnerable to extreme heat.” […]

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