In Singapore, where temperatures are rising at twice the global average, there is a real fear that extreme heat could make the affluent city-state uninhabitable.
That urgency has led to a government push for solutions. With the help of high-tech developments, including a mobile cart that measures radiation, researchers on the island are now trying to address urban heat through a program that the government said could be a model for other countries.
The program is aiming to build a computer model of Singapore, which would allow policymakers to analyze the effectiveness of heat mitigation measures.
Researchers say Singapore’s geographical position in Southeast Asia makes it a good model for others, particularly nations in the tropics. Situated near the Equator, the island has an average of 84 percent humidity and year-round temperatures that hover around 88 degrees Fahrenheit.
Data: A climate change study predicted that Singapore’s daily average temperature could rise between 35 degrees and 40 degrees Fahrenheit toward the end of this century.
What’s next: Singapore has planted 388,000 trees toward a goal of one million trees by 2030. “The prevailing hypothesis now is that the presence or absence of shade in a place like Singapore is the critical determinant in adjusting to heat exposure,” Winston Chow, a climate researcher, said.