Chaired by Prof. Dr. Sahar Sodoudi, Urban Climate and Health Working Group, Freie Universität Berlin
More than half of the world’s population lives in cities. By 2030 this number will have swollen to 70%, with urban growth concentrated in Africa and Asia. Cities face two major problems; climate change (due to the increase in greenhouse gases) and the Urban Heat Island (due to urbanization and land cover change). The Urban Heat Island will be intensified by global warming and more frequent heat waves, leading to enhanced heat stress for people, animals and plants in urban areas.
Strategies to mitigate and to adapt to both climate change and the Urban Heat Island are required to keep our cities livable and resilient. These strategies should be evaluated in term of their effectiveness and feasibility. Combined mitigation and adaptation strategies should be designed, which not only improve the outdoor urban climate, but also reduce indoor energy demand and at the same time decrease the risk of heat stress (depending on thermal perception of the human body).
Adaption action will be more successful if we narrow the gap between science and decision-making. Therefore, this workshop will show how science can support decision-making to adapt our cities to climate change. As important as urban climatology is for sustainable development, urban as well as landscape management and planning also have to cope with changing socio economic, political and ecological conditions. Meanwhile, measures must be taken to achieve energy efficiency, sustainable water and wastewater management, and to reduce the risk of disaster.