In 2017 Santiago (Chile) registered one of the highest temperatures in its history, exceeding the 37°C mark. Considering the recent surge of climatic variations related to rising temperatures —just as the heatwaves and wildfires in California— it is expected that this phenomenon will continue occurring, affecting the quality of life of millions of people. These are the opening remarks of the video GeoAdaptive has prepared to launch its first office in Latin America, located in Santiago, Chile. With this video, GeoAdaptive hopes to show the public how, through the integration of scientific rigor and creativity, it is possible to deliver solutions to current global challenges.

Temperatures affect the municipalities of Santiago and Providencia differently due to inherent variations in building density and vegetation. Urban vegetation has the ability to cool down the environment through the photosynthesis process and the shade it provides. The analyses—done with satellite and geospatial technologies— allowed the measurement of temperatures and tree canopy coverage in each municipality, providing relevant information to address heat-waves and heat island effect in the metropolitan area of Santiago:

  • The analysis of over a thousand streets, showed that the streets of Providencia have twice the tree coverage than those of Santiago; this translates in the possibility of providing twice the shade at critical hours. Therefore, Santiago exhibits a wider distribution of higher temperatures compared to Providencia, since the latter municipality is crisscrossed by forested streets that cool the urban environment.
  • The comparison of the temperatures every 25 meters along two streets (one in each municipality) found differences of over 7°Celcius (12.6°F). This highlights the importance of urban vegetation in regulating temperatures and, therefore, fostering a better quality of life.

The information provided by advanced analytics, as seen in the video, would allow municipalities to detect critical areas affected by rising temperatures, thus improving the social and environmental benefits of municipal programs and investments, such as parks, landscaping, and urban forestry management.

Have a look at the video

Do you want to know more?

Download the press release here


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