The American city of Phoenix has a history of suffering from heat episodes which lead to deaths and an increase in crime as well.
This is a new VOX video - I have used them before in my teaching...
It’s time to stop looking at trees as a form of “beautification.” They are, instead, a living form of infrastructure, providing a variety of services that include stormwater management, air filtering, carbon sequestration, and, most importantly for a city like Phoenix, Arizona, they cool the environment around them.
Trees can lower neighborhood temperatures in three ways:
1) Their shade prevents solar radiation from hitting paved surfaces like concrete and asphalt, which absorb energy and rerelease it into the air as heat.
2) Their leaves pull heat from the immediate area in order to evapotranspirate water that’s drawn from the soil. And,
3) If you’re standing under one, a tree protects your body directly from the sun’s rays. If you’ve ever made a summer visit to a dry, hot city like Phoenix, you’ll know how important shade is for making any outdoor experiences tolerable.
As Phoenix deals with a rising frequency of extreme heat waves — which aren’t only deadly, but also cause worrisome spikes in energy demand — the city is looking to trees as part of its heat mitigation strategy. Phoenix isn’t devoid of trees, but they’re distributed unevenly across the city. A quick glance at a satellite image of the metro area reveals substantial green splotches in the north and east and brown ones in the south and west, where many lower-income neighborhoods are located.