Monday, November 13, 2023
1:30 PM - 3:00 PM
Variability in Energy Consumption in Relation to Urban Heat Island and Socioeconomic Vulnerability
Session ID
A2 - Lightning: Improving Community Resilience through Sustainability + Adaptation
Climate Change

Heat waves are becoming frequent phenomena that are impacting every country around the world. Of course, the changing climate combined with rapid urbanization is contributing to the exasperating effects of heat waves on human society, specifically, in the form of Urban Heat Islands (UIHI) in cities. On one hand, UHIs contribute to microclimates in a city in the form of increased temperature in the city center vs surrounding sub-urban and rural areas, they also cause heat related illnesses, energy burden and contribute to socioeconomic adversities among socially vulnerable populations. While indoor cooling (e.g., air conditioning) is a good solution to mitigating heat stress, often this is not a solution for the disadvantaged communities. In order to assist these communities and local stakeholders in identifying and geotargeting potential mitigation strategies in the form green infrastructures, cooling centers, this study focused on examining the variability in energy consumption across a city (i.e., Knoxville, TN) and among different socio-economically vulnerable groups, and explore the relationship between energy consumption, energy burden, socioeconomic vulnerability and UHI. The purpose is to (i) fine tune the geospatial model developed to determine access to cooling centers using Earth Observation data and census data, (ii) identify potential locations for placement of cooling centers and/or green infrastructures, and (iii) gain insight into the seasonal variation in energy consumption to assist with energy resilience initiatives.

Supporting Document 1