|Institution:||University of Birmingham|
|Keywords:||GB Physical geography; GE Environmental Sciences|
|Full text PDF:||http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/6961/|
The urban heat island (UHI) effect is an inadvertent modification of climate which leads to increased temperatures in urban areas. This in turn increases localised demand for air conditioning and refrigeration which can be a significant drain on energy resources. At a time of increasing economic, political and environmental concerns with respect to energy policy, security, efficiency and climate change, there is a need to focus efforts to understand energy usage in cities for current and future climates. Using data from an Urban Meteorological Network (UMN) along with a critiqued degree days methodology, this thesis analyses the UHI and estimate current and future cooling demand in Birmingham-UK. From the results it was possible to identify that currently the main factor in energy consumption is income, however when isolating income influence through normalization process it is possible to identify the impact of the UHI. A significant finding was that the distribution of the surface UHI appears to be clearly linked to landuse, whereas for canopy UHI, advective processes appear to play an important role. Analysing Tair data available from the UMN the cooling demand for summer 2013 and future climate scenarios were calculated and demonstrated the importance of high resolution air temperature measurements in estimating electricity demand within urban areas.