a scenario where carbon emissions were not throttled back, 4 per cent
of India’s population would experience a non-survivable heatwave at
some point after 2071.
wet bulb temperature (which takes into account humidity) of 35C is
when things start to head south.
Australia is already in a stifling heat zone stretching across Asia.
need to evaporate and sweat to cool down but when temperatures get
close to or above our core temperature, and when humidity is high,
the air becomes saturated and we’re not going to lose that sweat so
our cooling mechanism is hampered,” said Dr Hanna.
conditions wouldn’t affect everyone equally but in a major heatwave
in India, she said, people could start to overheat even when sitting
a high emission scenario, India could experience heatwaves that cause
death within hours by the latter part of this century. Picture:
it’s 38C outside people feel crappy and grumpy and that has an
impact on assaults so it has all manner of social issues,” she
August, the Territory Government kicked off a project to see where
Darwin’s hot spots were — and what was causing them — so they
could cool the CBD down.
heat mitigation study uses a dedicated “energy bus” and drones to
measure surface and air temperatures.
study found our streets, parking lots, roofs and pavements have very
high surface temperatures, ranging from 45-67C,” said Chief
Minister Michael Gunner at the time.
such as the Post Office carpark, the Supreme Court car park, and the
Bus Terminal are incredibly hot — Cavenagh Street (a CBD
thoroughfare) is a river of fire.”
Samtamouris told news.com.au Darwin was a classic case of an urban
heat island where materials used in roads and buildings turbocharged
Darwin heat mitigation study has found some surface temperatures are
in excess of 60C. Picture: UNSWSource:Supplied
temperatures drop dramatically in areas of foliage. Picture:
surfaces like bitumen absorb high amounts of solar radiation leading
to high surface temperatures.” he said.
material with a temperature of about 70C may heat the air by around
materials, such as special “cool” asphalt, can bring the
surrounding temperatures down.
Darwin, you have overheating because there’s too much bitumen and
not enough greenery”.
study will continue for the next year but the Government said it is
already burying one of its major carparks to reduce its impact on air
it’s not just Darwin. Sydney’s west is regularly up to 10C warmer
than the CBD. The reasons are different — the CBD is cooled by
winds coming off the seas which peter out by the time you reach, say,
impression of a vine shade structure over Cavenagh Street in Darwin.
the result is the same — increasingly uninhabitable cities. And
climate change, pushing average temperatures up, continues to stymie
and Cairns are not as bad but they will start to become like Darwin.
Everything is just moving to the extreme but we just don’t know
exactly when or how fast it will happen.” said Prof Hanna.
temperatures are going so badly and emissions are increasing so much
that it’s not looking good.”
more trees and creating shady streets was a good strategy to make
cities more liveable, she said. But a few plants here and there had
it keeps warming and warming, there’s only a little it can do.”