Cities trap heat, in a phenomenon known as the urban heat island effect.
Plants can have a beneficial effect – which is one reason the nursery industry levy is being used to support four PhD students working to identify cost effective strategies to mitigate urban heat islands in Australian cities.
Nursery and Garden Industry Australia (NGIA) is a participant in the CRC for Low Carbon Living (CRCLCL), which is running the Urban Micro Climates project.
The study brings together experts from different backgrounds with the aim of making research into urban heat islands more accessible to landscape and urban planners and designers, based on sound scientific knowledge.
The project outcomes will include publication of a ‘Handbook of practical solutions for mitigating urbane heat islands in Australian cities’.
The CRC is a national research and innovation hub that seeks to enable a globally competitive low carbon built environment sector.
One of its key aims is to help cut Australia’s residential and commercial carbon emissions by 10 mega tonnes by 2020; the environmental equivalent of taking 2.3 million cars off the road each year.