Shocker: Heat wave story from Associated Press – no mention of global warming

Some supporting research conducted at New York City follows the news item below.  h/t to WUWT reader Phil (not the grouchy one) -A

Photo by Tyrone Turner/National Geographic - infrared showing heat loss from NYC buildings

Heat islands: Cities heat quickly, cool slowly


Associated Press Writer

NEW YORK (AP) — Hot town, summer in the city? No kidding.

The high temperatures blanketing the Northeast and mid-Atlantic regions of the country are making many people miserable, but those in New York City, Philadelphia and other dense, built-up areas are getting hit with the heat in a way their counterparts in suburbs and rural areas aren’t.

Cities absorb more solar energy during the day and are slower to release it after the sun sets, making for uncomfortable nights and no real relief from the heat. And because they haven’t cooled down as much overnight, mornings are warmer and the thermometer goes right back up when the sun starts beating down the next day.

Scientists have known for years about so-called heat islands, urban areas that are hotter than the less-developed areas around them.

Cities are just “not well designed to release that summertime heat,” said William Solecki, geography professor at Hunter College and director of the City University of New York’s Institute for Sustainable Cities.

The lack of nighttime relief can make the daytime high temperatures even more difficult for people to take as the days pass and the heat continues, he said.

That’s “where you start to have real problems, if your body’s not cooling down,” Solecki said. “You’re not getting that break.”

Deaths blamed on the heat included a 92-year-old Philadelphia woman whose body was found Monday and a homeless woman found lying next to a car Sunday in suburban Detroit.

The heat-islands effect is significant in the East because “we have a large population living in heavily built-up areas with lots of concrete and lots of steel, good absorbers of heat,” National Weather Service spokesman Sean Potter said.

full story here at Tampa Bay Online


Here is some supporting research from NASA (not NASA GISS).

Keeping New York City “Cool” is the Job of NASA’s “Heat Seekers”

Jan. 30, 2006

The “heat is on” in New York City, whether it’s summer or winter. This is due to a phenomenon called the urban heat island effect that causes air temperatures in New York City and other major cities to be warmer than in neighboring suburbs and rural areas. And, in a big city, warmer air temperatures can impact air quality, public health and the demand for energy.

Surface temperatures of NYC from  Landsat.Image to right: A thermal satellite image of New York City captured by NASA’s Landsat satellite on August 14, 2002 at 10:30 a.m., shows the locations of the warmest air temperatures as seen in red. The blue indicates areas with cooler air temperatures. Click on image to enlarge. Credit: NASA

Recently, several innovative approaches developed by scientists, public officials, environmental activists, community organizations and others have been put in place to take a bite out of the Big Apple’s temperature problem. NASA researchers, using NASA satellite observations, weather pattern data and computer models, have recently assessed how well those strategies are working. Their study results will be discussed during the 2006 American Meteorological Society’s annual meeting in Atlanta, Ga., Jan. 29 through Feb. 2.

“We need to help public officials find the most successful ways to reduce the heat island effect in New York. With ever-increasing urban populations around the world, the heat island effect will become even more significant in the future,” said Stuart Gaffin, an associate research scientist at Columbia University, New York, and a co-author of the new NASA study. “The summertime impacts are especially intense with the deterioration of air quality, because higher air temperatures increase ozone. That has health effects for everyone. We also run an increased risk of major heat waves and blackouts as the heat island effect raises demand for electricity.”

In cities, the urban heat island effect is caused by the large number of buildings, sidewalks and other non-natural surfaces that limit the amount of land covered with vegetation like grass and trees. Land surfaces with vegetation offer high moisture levels that cool the air when the moisture evaporates from soil and plants.

This image indicates  case study areas in New York City used in the NASA study, and weather  stations.Image to left: This image indicates case study areas in New York City used in the NASA study, and weather stations. Click on image to enlarge. Credit: NASA

In large cities, land surfaces with vegetation are relatively few and are replaced by non-reflective, water-resistant surfaces such as asphalt, tar and building materials that absorb most of the sun’s radiation. These surfaces hinder the natural cooling that would otherwise take effect with the evaporation of moisture from surfaces with vegetation. The urban heat island occurrence is particularly pronounced during summer heat waves and at night when wind speeds are low and sea breezes are light. During these times, New York City’s air temperatures can rise 7.2 degrees F higher than in surrounding areas.

In the recent project, NASA researchers set out to recommend ways to reduce the urban heat island effect in New York City. They looked at strategies such as promoting light-colored surfaces such as roofs and pavements that reflect sunlight, planting “urban forests” and creating “living roofs” on top of buildings where sturdy vegetation can be planted and thrive. Using a regional climate computer model, the researchers wanted to calculate how these strategies lower the city’s surface and close-to-surface air temperatures and what the consequences of these strategies would be on New York’s energy system, air quality and the health of its residents.

The researchers conducted a city-wide case study over the summer of 2002 to measure changes in air temperatures. They also used six smaller case studies during the same period in places like Lower Manhattan, the Bronx’s Fordham section, Brooklyn’s Crown Heights section and the Maspeth section of Queens. The areas were chosen for the different ways land is used and their nearness to areas with high electrical use. They also had warmer-than-average near-surface air temperatures called “hot spots” and boasted available spaces to test ways to reduce the urban heat island effect.

“We found that vegetation is a powerful cooling mechanism. It appears to be the most effective tool to reduce surface temperatures,” Gaffin said. “Another effective approach is a man-made approach to cooling by making very bright, high albedo, or reflected light, on roof tops. These light-colored surfaces, best made using white coatings, reflect the sun’s light and thereby, its heat. Interestingly, more area is available to create the lighter surfaces than to add vegetation in a city such as New York.”

This project is being conducted by and funded by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). For more information on the NYSERDA’s Environmental Monitoring, Evaluation, andProtection (EMEP) project, please visit on the Web:


Rosenzweig, C., W. Solecki, L. Parshall, S. Gaffin, B. Lynn, R. Goldberg, J. Cox, and S. Hodges 2006. Mitigating New York City’s heat island with urban forestry, living roofs, and light surfaces. Presentation at 86th American Meteorological Society Annual Meeting, Jan. 31, 2006, Atlanta, Georgia.

+ Download Abstract PDF


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We weren’t so lucky. Yesterday, our paper talked about the heat wave and couldn’t stop themselves from quoting Michael Mann, who is God to them. Of course Mann played up the global warming thing and said that this is just a “taste” of things to come.


Wow Anthony – your message has got across. Instead of global warming warnings, journalists are acknowledging and explaining the urban heat island effect. Congratulations on changing the discourse – a scientific triumph for you!
REPLY: Thanks but I doubt it, if Seth Borenstein had been assigned to the story, it would have been far different. -A


Okay, but I tend to see a lot of commentary about the failure of climate scientists whenever it’s cold (“Climate Skeptic”) and generally news coverage to that effect.
Wouldn’t it be great if we all just played fair and admitted that weather is different than climate…

George E. Smith

Well I don’t disagree with the heating part of it; but hot things do not cool slower than cold things; so nyet on their slow nightime cooling theory.
The trouble is most of those city buildings run their Temperature control systems all the time; and you often find those buildings with their lights on all night.
The building I am working in right now; has both the heating and the air conditioning running all the time.
If they let those office buildings cool down at night; like they would of their own accord; it simply takes too long to bring them up to the normal level in the morning; so they simply don’t let them cool down.
A very few office buildings have intelligent window designs. A good example is the Monsanto “Gold Brick” building in the suburbs of St Louis Mo (out by the Airport); which has gold plated windows; that reflect heat from the outside of the glass.
Too many buildings simply use absorptive tinted glass, which means the glass itself gets hot; and then reradiates inside the building.
But those buildings in the big cities cool slowly because they don’t let them cool.

Henry chance

Joe Romms hates this. Too much truth. His histrionics outburst ommitted the cold weather in San Diego. Even in the plains, large areas are wet and very cool.
The southwest should be only hot and dry.
I have a deck on the west side. In the evening i can feel the heat coming off the brick and imagine what it is like with huge buildings that soak up heat from the sun.
When I drive from the city to the country in the afternoon, my car thermometer drops 4-8 degrees.

Peter Plail

Zilla – howdy stranger, you must be new around these parts otherwise you might have seen the phrase “weather is not climate” used a bit, because most folks contributing realise that this is indeed the case and articulate it regularly. By your standards then, we must be a pretty fair-minded bunch – it is great that you have realised it.

Sonya Porter

Over here in England the weather forecasters are too fond of saying that temperatures will ‘reach a high of….’ meaning that the highest temperature will be, say 28C, in London which is one of the biggest heat sinks of all. Look at the rest of the UK and you’ll see that temperatures are anything up to 5C less.

Dave Dardinger

You say hot things don’t cool more slowly than cooler things, but that’s only true in one sense and not the one which is being talked about. It’s true that a hot object will release more heat and thus cool more than a cooler object, but the question at hand is how soon a given object will cool to a certain temperature (one that is comfortable to humans in this case.) For this question the answer is that a hot object will take longer than a cooler one to reach a given temperature.
Your other points have some validity, but if you work the numbers you’ll likely find the majority of excess heat at night in a city is from more difficult path heat must take to escape from the city rather than absorbing windows or AC venting.

Douglas DC

We are approaching the first 90 F. weather in NE Oregon, like the Rattlers in the high rimrock shedding their skins, the Warmists will wiggle from under their wet rock,
and start bleating:Gaia! Algore! Saaave us!….


From Prof. Ross McKitrick’s (University of Guelph) “Response to Independent Climate Change Email Review”:
From Prof. McKitrick’s response (2nd hollow bullet point on page 2):

On page 76 paragraph 23, they asked whether the published IPCC claim was “invented”. In my submission of evidence I asked the ICCER to obtain from Professor Jones the evidence supporting the IPCC claim. Even though they acknowledge that the supporting evidence would consist of a p-value (p. 72 fn. 7) they did not receive any such evidence from Professor Jones. The ICCER provides no evidence to support the IPCC text except for reference to unnamed studies showing “that the large scale organisation of atmospheric circulation produces a spatially integrated response to forcing” (p. 76 para. 23), which is completely irrelevant to the discussion and is in any case a specific scientific claim well outside their remit. Despite presenting no evidence to support the claim in question, they write “we see no justification of the view that that this response was invented.” This finding is totally unsupported. The conspicuous failure of the ICCER to prove otherwise only reinforces the view that the IPCC claim was invented for the purpose. (emphasis added)

From the Muir Russell report ( on page 72, paragraphs 12 and 13:

12. The final draft of Chapter 3 did however include reference both to McKitrick & Michaels (2004) and de Laat and Maurellis (2006), in the following paragraph:
McKitrick and Michaels (2004) and De Laat and Maurellis (2006) attempted to demonstrate that geographical patterns of warming trends over land are strongly correlated with geographical patterns of industrial and socioeconomic development, implying that urbanisation and related land surface changes have caused much of the observed warming. However, the locations of greatest socioeconomic development are also those that have been most warmed by atmospheric circulation changes (Sections and 3.6.4), which exhibit largescale coherence. Hence, the correlation of warming with industrial and socioeconomic development ceases to be statistically significant. In addition, observed warming has been, and transient greenhouse-induced warming is expected to be, greater over land than over the oceans (Chapter 10), owing to the smaller thermal capacity of the land.”
13. It has been surmised in a submission to the Review by McKitrick6 that Jones wrote the above paragraph and bears responsibility for its inclusion. The same submission alleges that it represents a “fabricated conclusion” or “invented evidence” and that only the derivation of a p-value7 from a statistical test that is compatible with the claim of statistical insignificance would rebut this allegation of fabrication. It alleges that this is evidence of bias, and that after attempts to exclude evidence that conflicted with the preferred CRU interpretation of the CRUTEM data series from drafts 1 and 2, reasons were contrived in the published draft for the specific purpose of rejecting this evidence. If this were correct, such actions would appear to violate the principles in Chapter 5, of the duty of scientists to ensure that uncertainties are clearly transmitted to those that have the responsibility for deciding on any contingent actions. (emphasis added)

From the Muir Russell report, Footnote 7 on page 72:

7 The p-value in statistics is the probability of obtaining a statistic at least as extreme as the one actually observed, assuming that there is no relationship between the measured phenomena. The lower the p-value, the less likely that there is no relationship. McKitrick and Michaels (2004) obtained a pvalue of 0.002, suggesting a significant relationship between climatic and socio-economic trends.


It’s July 8th. Yesterday, we turned on the furnace again. I’m wearing my fleece-lined jacket when I go out. Where is all this Global Warming when we need it? It’s a travesty…


Can someone please ask the native Americans how hot it was on Manhattan during the MWP?

Ursus maritimus

George, no!!
Well, what you say may be true, I’m no physicist, but I’ll be dammed if I can get my house cooled off at night this week. With daytime highs of 35C (feels like 43), and nighttime lows of 24C, my bedroom was at 31C last night as I lay there panting like a St. Bernard. I find that my house temperature goes up a 1C step for everyday of a heatwave, and simply does not cool down until the big heat ends (sorry for the metric system folks 🙂

Milwaukee Bob

Zilla said at 10:04 am
Wouldn’t it be great if we all just played fair and admitted that weather is different than climate… and:
Peter Plail said at 10:15 am
…“weather is not climate” …
Peter, yes we are a “pretty fair-minded bunch” and that phrase is thrown in a lot around here – but that doesn’t make it correct AND that is different than the phrase “weather is different than climate” which phraseology wise IS technically correct but I’m sure is not Zilla’s meaning.
“Climate” is the term we have agreed on to mean the summarization of “weather” over a period of time and generally over a broader area than what we identify for weather. They are “different” ONLY in that “weather” is what is happening right now all over the world! “Climate” does not happen! The sum of weather (climate) changes ONLY when the weather over the defined period and area changes! “Climate” does not exist. Climate is a figment of the human imagination and if we fall into the AGW trap of thinking it is something differant, something that actually does exist, something “different” from weather, we weaken our position. Without weather there is no climate. Without climate – – well, look out the window…..


They are now skiing Australia. Go there if you want to escape the summer heat. Anyone? Buller, Buller?


If cities heat quickly and cool slowly they are predestined to be used as solarthermal power plants.

Theo Goodwin

Have we heard from Phil Jones on this? Has he called in to explain that, according to his gold plated research, there is no significant urban heat island effect? I just cannot wait to read or hear what he has to say.

Leon Brozyna

Again, from the “weather is not climate” department:

… Public information statement…
As of 1203 PM EDT Buffalo recorded its first 90 degree temperature since Sep 7 2007. That is a stretch of 1034 days between 90 degree readings. This is the 4th longest stretch without hitting 90 since the official readings have been taken at the Buffalo international Airport. The longest stretch was 1487 days that ended with a 90 degree reading on the 24th of July back in 1973.

Also, note that official readings apparently only started at the airport during the 1940’s. Before then the station was closer in to Buffalo and Lake Erie (so I’ve heard).


No mention of global warming but a complete acknowledgement of the Urban Heat Island effect.
I know, I know — the models already compensate for UHI. But do the model compensate correctly? We may never know since the raw data isn’t available.

Janice The American Elder

A bit of trivia: In the Southwest US, people sometimes paint their roofs white to avoid absorbing as much heat. A number of years ago, in a neighborhood near an airport, people were asked to paint their roofs black, because the white roofs reflected too much light and made flying more dangerous. We should be careful of employing simplistic widespread solutions to a problem, because they can very easily lead to something else becoming a problem. The alligators don’t always take kindly to draining the swamp.


Dont worry, Yesterday CNN countered this story with their own, adding in global warming.

What’s weird is — we found when putting instruments on the moon back when, the moon and other bodies behaved much the same way — The moon rocks absorbed the heat from the sun during the daylight phase, and gave it up slowly when it got dark. It was as if the rocks stored the heat and released it slowly. It’s a wonder no one has figured that part out. But — Either the moon has a greenhouse, with no atmosphere, or there was something wrong with greenhouse theory — turns out it was a broke theory.
Using the Stefan-Boltmann equations NASA proved there was no such thing as greenhouse effect, very much like what the recent research of Dr Richard Lindzen concluded. Rocks, water and soil store heat, strange as that may be.

Dave McK

There is no better solar heat collector than an asphalt parking lot.
Everybody fights to park alongside the one little ornamental shrub for shade.
Your car seat will burn you.
Pets or kids can not be left in the car.
I’m so glad we have NASA to keep us up to date on these things- my observations were done without satellites or surcharges, so obviously they’re not pee revue.
Will they soon tell us that moslems invented the Garkad Tree?


Well, in the Pacific Northwest it just turned warm after the July 4th long weekend. Up til then, it has been cool and rainy almost constantly since January! Earlier in the winter we were reading all the regular “low snow-pack” stories, predictably tied to “Globaloney”, but now the reservoirs are full and the snowpack in the West in general is above normal. Hardly a peep about it.
Making lemonade out of lemons, weatherwise, I have been baiting my favorite Globaloney-fearmonger at work. She shut up about it for a while, as she complained on and on about the winter lasting into June! And every time she complained I just looked at her and smiled – she knew exactly what I was thinking, so she started doing her complaining out of my hearing – the plan worked! I’ll bet after a week of warm weather, she will be back to her old Gore-worshiping self, though!


Your posts are long, and your explanations are wordy and full of blocks of quotes and marvelous wisdom.
“In addition, observed warming has been, and transient greenhouse-induced warming is expected to be, greater over land than over the oceans (Chapter 10)”
Observed = From which data set?
Transient? Quantify please?
Expected? Quantify please?
Greater? By what gradient for which temperature change from which data set?
Global warming from CO2 from humans can’t CAUSE EVERYTHING and fit EVERY EXPECTATION.
I have YET to read the AGW paper that says “contrary to our expectation, X happened instead of Y.” where X is against the fundamental concept of AGW. NEVER. NOT ONE.
That is a magically conspicuous element of experimenter bias. Large bodies of researchers publishing things honestly ALWAYS produce research that is decidedly inconclusive, disproves the original hypothesis or validates an alternate viewpoint, and an honest scientist does well by himself to point it out. 100’s of papers that say “this is in-line with expectation but requires more research” is n-rays.
Unfalsifiable hypothesis is unfalsifiable


Bad news…truth will prevail:
y=sin x
What goes up must come down
spinning wheel got to go round
Talking about your troubles it’s a crying sin
Ride a painted pony
Let the spinning wheel spin …………….♫♫♫

Pompous Git

Theo Goodwin said @ July 8, 2010 at 11:23 am:
“Have we heard from Phil Jones on this? Has he called in to explain that, according to his gold plated research, there is no significant urban heat island effect? I just cannot wait to read or hear what he has to say.”
David Parker already said it in Journal of Climate:
“Parker 2006:
The main impact of any urban warming is expected to be on Tmin on calm nights (Johnson et al. 1991). However, for 1950-2000, the trends of global annual average Tmin for windy, calm, and all conditions were virtually identical at 0.20°C – 0.06°C decade^{-1} (Fig. 4a,b and Table 1).”
No room for UHI in CAGW…

Ed Caryl

Climate: The weather in some location averaged over a long period of time.
The question is: how long a time? I suggest at least a thousand years. The whole problem of CAGW has arisen because of the short term memories of humans.


that temp is a normal summers day in sydney, we would be all down at the beach or at the local pub all having a good time . at the moment it is real cold down under . bring on summer


Well at least they are finally talking of something real in this article.
Have you ever wondered what effect the common mirror finished buildings with special IR reflecting coatings is doing to the cities. These coated and mirrored finishes are great to keep nearly all heat out of the buildings and lower their A/C bills but all of that heat does go somewhere.
If the buildings were matte white at lest a large portion of the reflected heat would go upward back to space but these mirror buildings reflect it nearly 100% downward to the streets below. That is probably the biggest factor of why UHI keeps increasing as building after building add these new finishes in the name of efficiency.
You can have it both ways, physics won’t allow it.


Buffoon says:
July 8, 2010 at 12:14 pm
Well said.
On a related point, it’s also noticeable how the “errors” which have been admitted (melting Himalayas, dying Amazon, flooding Netherlands) have always erred on the hysterical side.
Another sign, if one is required, that the IPCC process is institutionally biased to big up CAGW.

gary gulrud

“We found that vegetation is a powerful cooling mechanism.”
Well worth the price of the study, no doubt. Cities are great for commerce, life, not so much.
To follow Leon’s “weather is not climate”, here in Central MN, we’ve had a 90 degree day or two in 15 months. After what duration may we start talking ‘climate’ anyway?


The strange thing about AGW is that it affects cities first.


Oh, another one:
If we want to know how the world will look like in the year 2100, we only need to look at New York today.


While over in Australia:
Western Australia’s big chill is continuing with Perth marking a record-breaking 12 consecutive nights of temperatures below 5C, according to the WA Bureau of Meteorology.
Temperatures dipped to a wintry 0.3C in the city overnight, with Jandakot recording a freezing minus -1.4C at 5.22am.
The bureau says it is the longest cold snap on record, beating a July 1997 stretch of nine straight nights of 5C or below.
Perth Zoo pampers animals with hot rocks, sun lamps and heated enclosures
WA is currently experiencing the third driest winter on record, while Antarctica has record snow.


I do a bus transfer each day in downtown Dallas. There are a lot of glassy buildings here, and those window-walls reflect light and heat into the streets. Shading the rooftops with vegetation isn’t going to help people on the streets. How can they get the walls to reflect the light up and out?
Maybe NASA should remember the Apollo mission, when they deployed the reflectors that sent laser light back to the ground stations no matter what angle they came from. Seems to me such surfaces would send the radiation back up at the sun at any hour of the day.
On the other hand, I bet those yankees like that extra warmth in the winter…


DirkH says:
“If we want to know how the world will look like in the year 2100, we only need to look at New York today.”
… if we don’t act NOW! (sorry, forgot that bit.)


Correction to wayne says: July 8, 2010 at 12:26 pm :
You can’t have it both ways, physics won’t allow it.


jorgekafkazar says:
July 8, 2010 at 10:50 am
“It’s July 8th. Yesterday, we turned on the furnace again. I’m wearing my fleece-lined jacket when I go out. Where is all this Global Warming when we need it? It’s a travesty…”
All of the global warming is in New York, Philly, and Baltimore right now. (Oh, wait up… that’s not global.)
It is refreshing to see UHI discussed by the MSM. (Oh, wait up… 1 article isn’t “global” either. Sigh…)


vigilantfish says:
July 8, 2010 at 10:02 am
Wow Anthony – your message has got across. Instead of global warming warnings, journalists are acknowledging and explaining the urban heat island effect.
Hellooooo! I live in Los Angeles where, in the past, we’ve had record breaking temps of 122F in my neck of the woods. It’s 64F right now. From what I last noticed, in my almost 40 years of living here, this is the prince(ss) of Urban Centers. So where is my Heat Island Effect?
And before I’m told some nonsense about variability which is true in general, but absolutely irrelevant in this specific issue, why don’t we simply see the forest for the trees?
Having accused us of ignoring “coolness”, an absolute falsehood since all regions, cooler or warmer, are automatically incorporated in GLOBAL AVERAGES, what about your failure to acknowledge the heat waves throughout Asia? And before you insult my intelligence and ramble about Australia ad nauseum, why don’t you go back to square one and realize what GLOBAL AVERAGES are intended to measure?
This January through June has been a record setting period according to those satellites. That is the GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE versus the egocentric and infantile “It’s snowing in my backyard! It must be the same throughout the planet!”
Have you gathered data together for an assessment of average temperatures throughout the GLOBE? It’s already done for you by those very satellite images that are on NASA’s web site. You know, like the ones that are posted on this thread?
And please don’t tell me about how inauthentic you believe NASA’s data is. Other than mere paranoia, why should one believe that they are legitimate or illegitimate at the convenience of the person using it?
Bottom line, this January through June has been a record setting period according to those satellites.

Dave Springer

It’s more than an albedo problem and more than a lack of evaporative cooling by vegetation problem. The air is stagnant, there’s a million vehicles with hot motors and exhaust pipes pouring out heat and another million air conditioners also pouring out hot air. All of it trapped close to the surface by multi-story buildings. Even CO2 is elevated in a densely populated city as all the vehicles and millions of large mammals inhale oxygen and exhale CO2.
The only way to get an honest temperature reading absent land use influences is to place the thermometers well inside land that has not been altered by human activity.


So one needs a retractable white roof. You roll it out during the summer, and reel it in for the rest of the year, leaving the regular darker roof to absorb sunlight when it’s cooler
The foks who adapt are the ones that survive.

Theo Goodwin

DirkH writes:
“If cities heat quickly and cool slowly they are predestined to be used as solarthermal power plants.”
No, they would be used as “hot water bottles,” you know, in bed. The causes of UHI are many and complex, but there is a simple model that might help explain matters. Take an old city such as Baltimore or St. Louis. They have a high number of row-houses built between, say, 1870 and 1940. When they were built, those row houses might have cooled reasonably at night. But now they are loaded down with air conditioners, dryers, and a bazillion more modern appliances. They are surrounded by asphalt, usually black stuff. So, they produce a lot more heat than they were designed to produce. But the air moving among them is probably less than what it was in 1940. The main mechanism of cooling for those old neighborhoods, moving air, simply cannot perform the task that it once performed. So, temperatures are higher at night and stay high longer. Yet it has nothing to do with global warming.


In Breckenridge, CO, the transition from asphalt and concrete to forest is abrupt. I notice the temperature drop almost instantly as I walk on pavement in town amongst condos and hotels onto a trail leading into the forest, then on my return I feel the warming as I step back onto asphalt from dirt. So the effects of UHI are very obvious even in the tiny town of Breckenridge, although with cool and wet weather almost every day here there isn’t much “heat” for the “island”.

gary gulrud

“This January through June has been a record setting period according to those satellites. That is the GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE”
That is also a very short-term perspective, i.e., not climate, comprende?


Wow! Just. Wow!
That landsat picture is a fantastic tie-in to the earlier story about record temperatures at BWI.
Well do you see that dark red blob in the lower right. Above and to the right of the nice blue, cool, islands of Jamaica Bay. That blob is JFK airport.


I’m expecting a huge inner city Homo Sapiens dieback anytime now.


wayne says:
July 8, 2010 at 1:07 pm
Correction to wayne says: July 8, 2010 at 12:26 pm :
You can’t have it both ways, physics won’t allow it.

A quantum physicist might disagree with that.

Dave Springer

The “models” don’t compensate for UHI. They claim there is no significant influence on the outcome due to it. The official story from our good buddy and paragon of scientific integrity Phil Jones at East Anglia Urbanization effects in large-scale temperature records, with an emphasis on China is that “these UHIs however do not contribute to warming trends over the 20th century because the influences of the cities on surface temperatures have not changed over this time”.
Really, Phil? The number of automobiles and air conditioners and cement structures didn’t change between the years 1900 and 1999? Ooooooooooookay. I’ll believe that. NOT!