Session Overview
TUKUP7 (cont): Warning plans & Decision support tools
Friday, 24/Jul/2015:
4:30pm - 5:45pm

Session Chair: Alexander Baklanov, World Meteorological Organization (WMO)
Location: Spot Room


The CapaCities project: from Concepts to Actions for a Proactive Adaptation of Cities

Marion Bonhomme1, Catherine Dubois2, Luc Adolphe1, Geneviève Cloutier2, Serge Faraut1, Maja Karoline Rynning1, Anne Péré1, Corine Sadokh1

1ENSA Toulouse - LRA (Laboratoire de Recherche en Architecture), France; 2Laval University, Québec

This paper presents the research project CapaCities (from Concepts to Actions for a Proactive Adaptation of Cities). The project builds on previous results about the difficulty, for urban designers, to rely on quick-fix solutions to fully participate to sustainable urban development (Bonhomme, 2013; Dubois, 2014). Even if knowledge about sustainable urban development is increasing and several related design-aid tools have been created, a major issue remains: those tools hardly find their way into the professional practice. As explanations, two problems are identified in literature. The first one is the lack of interdisciplinarity and interoperability among existing tools. The second one is that tools, typically designed by research scientists, are not suited to the urban planner’s needs. There is some evidence that their experience and insight are rarely acknowledged.

The purpose of this research project is to create a prototype version of a multicriteria design-aid tool that is able to address the two aforementioned problems.

The first objective is to increase the suitability of the tool for urban planners. One major issue is the level of details given by existing tools that is often too precise and specific to be truly useful for the professionals. With this in mind, interviews and workshops are conducted with urban planners to acknowledge and document their specific way of understanding and using data. In addition, the results should allow us to identify new ways to integrate their experience and insight into the design of a new multicriteria tool. The paper will detail the methodology of these interviews and the main findings.

The second objective is to support interdisciplinarity. In order to do so, the tool will gather the results of several research projects conducted by some of the CapaCities project team members over the past years with regards to (1) energy consumption, (2) renewable energy production and (3) urban microclimates. The tool will be based on a GIS platform (as this type of tool is well known by urban planners) calculating simplified and aggregated indicators to guide the designer through the differents stage of their project.

The prototype version of the multicriteria design-aid tool will be tested in partnership with the professionals involved in the development of real urban projects located in the Toulouse metropolitan area.


Bonhomme, M. (2013, décembre). Contribution à la génération de bases de données multi-scalaires et évolutives pour une approche pluridisciplinaire de l’énergétique urbaine (Contribution to the generation of multiscalar and evolutionary databases for a multidisciplinary approach to urban energy) [in French]. Université de Toulouse, France.

Dubois, C. (2014, novembre). Adapter les quartiers et les bâtiments au réchauffement climatique ; Une feuille de route pour accompagner les architectes et les designers urbains québécois (Adapt neighborhoods and buildings to global warming; A roadmap to support architects and urban designers in Quebec) [in French]. Université Laval, Québec.

UMEP - An integrated tool for urban climatology and climate-sensitive planning applications

Fredrik Lindberg1, Sue Grimmond2, Shiho Onomura1, Leena Järvi3, Helen Ward2

1University of Gothenburg, Sweden; 2University of Reading, United Kingdom; 3University of Helsinki

The urban climate is influenced by processes taking place at a range of different scales. Based on application (e.g. land surface or thermal comfort modelling), the appropriate scale has to be considered to make accurate estimation of the phenomena examined. Furthermore, the interaction of processes taking place at different scales makes it important to accurately couple and understand the different scale-dependent processes controlling the urban climate and thus outdoor thermal comfort. In this paper UMEP (Urban Multi-scale Environmental Predictor), an integrated tool for urban climatology and climate sensitive planning applications is presented. The tool can be used for a variety of applications related to outdoor thermal comfort, urban energy consumption, climate change mitigation etc.

UMEP combines “state of the art” 1D and 2D models related to the processes essential for scale-independent urban climate estimations. The models include SOLWEIG (Lindberg and Grimmond 2011), SUEWS (Järvi et al. 2013), BLUEWS (Onomura et al. 2014) and LUCY (Allen et al. 2011) where each individual model has been extensively evaluated. Here, the new combined system is demonstrated and evaluated. The modelling system is designed to run from the street canyon to city scale (100-105 m) depending on the application. The ranges of scales are those that need to be understood for most urban climate, architectural and/or urban planning projects. The model is able to estimate a number of variables that relate to, for example, spatial variations of urban surface energy exchanges, or boundary layer developments. The ambition is to develop a tool designed for planners and architects, which, at the same time, can be used in more advanced research applications.

In order to easily use UMEP a major characteristic is the ability for a user to interact with spatial information to determine model parameters. This requires a dynamic approach where spatial data at different scales and from a variety of sources are needed. This is accomplished by using an existing application programming interface (API) for spatial data. UMEP makes use of QGIS - a cross-platform, free, open source desktop geographic information systems (GIS) application - that provides data viewing, editing and analysis capabilities. QGIS is both extendable by plugins and reducible to only the essential core features needed. Substantial advantages are offered by having GIS-software tightly coupled to the model. These include the ability to read and write a variety of geodata formats, ease of combining geodatasets so issues such as coordinate systems and scale are natively dealt with, visualization of inputs and outputs, and direct calculation of model parameters by pre-processing geodata thus reducing the number of preparation stages required and ensuring consistency between models and users.

Allen, L., et al., 2011: Global to city scale urban anthropogenic heat flux: model and variability. Int J Climatol, 31, 1990-2005.

Järvi, L. et al., 2014: Development of the Surface Urban Energy and Water balance Scheme (SUEWS) for cold climate cities. Geosci. Model Dev, 1063-1114.

Lindberg, F., and C. S. B. Grimmond, 2011: The influence of vegetation and building morphology on shadow patterns and mean radiant temperatures in urban areas: model development and evaluation. Theor Appl Climatol, 105, 311-323.

Onomura, S. et al., 2014: Meteorological forcing data for urban outdoor thermal comfort models obtained from a coupled convective boundary layer and surface energy balance scheme - In Press. Urb clim.

TUKUP7 (cont)-3-3431366_a.pdf

Integration of adaptation to climate change within the design process of urban planning projects : new tool(s) and new methodology(ies)

Morgane Colombert1, Marie Gantois2, Laurent Jacquet3, Alexia Leseur4, Guillaume Meunier3, Hypatia Nassopoulos1, Jean-Luc Salagnac5

1Université Paris Est, EIVP, Lab'Urba, EA 3482, France; 2City of Paris, France; 3EGIS Concept, France; 4CDC Climat, France; 5Scientifical and Technical Center of Buildings (CSTB), France

Climate change (CC) is acknowledged to be a fact and as stated in the IPCC reports, changes are already observed and future ones can even more noticeable. Future CCs will mainly depend on the progress on the reduction of greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions, hence, on the energy policies implemented in the countries with the greatest fossil fuels consumptions. It can be understood that urban areas will play a key role. Indeed, as stated by the International Energy Agency, more than two thirds of the world’s energy consumption and more than 70% of GHG emissions can be observed over urban areas. Yet, the most suitable means are available over the urban areas in order to face CCs, hedge against them and adapt to their impacts.

At present, transition towards low carbon cities seems to be an issue of concern, nevertheless, this issue cannot be thought separately from the question of adaptation to CCs and the need to adapt to changing climatic conditions. Extreme climatic events like the 2003 heat wave that occurred over Europe, revealed that urban areas are maladapted to such extreme heat conditions. This can be explained by the urban heat island effect which could be intensified by CC.

For years French territorial authorities have been supporting actions to reduce GHG emissions. Adaptation concern is more recent. Uncertainty concerning climatic projections hamper decision making concerning adaptation actions. Moreover such actions are not seen as rewarding and valuable from the citizens’ point of views and can be even seen as a failure of the efforts done in order to hedge against CC.

Despite these barriers, there is place for action, not inaction. Due to the long life-cycle of buildings (typically 50 years), the importance of the stock and the low annual rate of new construction (about 1% of the stock), the impact of future climate on some key issues have to be anticipated. At the very local level of urban planning projects, the assessment of energy consumption over the life-time period is based on past temperature information, and not on future one. Since 2000, building energy regulations take confort during hot periods into account. This can be considered as a first step towards the integration of future evolutions of climate. Thus, urban planning projects are not currently assessed based on future climatic conditions which could have consequences on heating and cooling energy consumptions as well as on water demands. Therefore, considering, starting from today, the question of adaptation to CC would help avoid actions initially envisaged in order to reduce vulnerability to CC but at the end conducing to even worse effects like the accentuation of CC risks and the vulnerability increase of third parties (i.e. maladaptation).

The present paper presents a new methodology that aims to better address the complexity related to the question of adaptation to CC at the scale of urban planning projects. A particular attention is given on both adaptation and mitigation issues. This methodology is based on the development of a novel tool allowing to compute mainly energy consumption of an urban planning project based on different climatic scenarios. In addition the methodology proposes the participation of all the stakeholders in order to involve them in the innovation process.

TUKUP7 (cont)-4-5871233_a.pdf

Review of tools for Quantifying the Contribution of Green Infrastructure to Carbon Performance

Parisa Pakzad1, Osmond Paul1, Conrad Heinz Philipp2

1University of New South Wales, Australia; 2University of South Australia, Australia

The exchange of carbon between the atmosphere and biosphere is an important factor in controlling global warming and climate change. Consequently, it is important to examine how carbon flows and cycles between different pools and how carbon stocks change in response to afforestation, reforestation, and deforestation, and other land-cover, land-use activities.

Eco-cities and green-cities are emerging concepts for the retrofitting of our urban areas and important component in the creation of more sustainable development towards climate change adaptation and mitigation.Green infrastructure as a key part of Eco-cities and green-cities contributes as a major ecological pool for carbon cycles. The term “green infrastructure” refers to an interconnected network of landscape assets that are intertwined with engineered (grey) infrastructure and buildings.

The ability to assess the performance of green infrastructure, based on measurable criteria at a variety of temporal and spatial scales, is critical for defining the difference between effective and non-effective scenarios for sustainable urban development.

This paper aims to identify the most relevant evaluation tools, applications and methods for quantifying the carbon performance of green infrastructure.

The existing quantitative tools used to measure green infrastructures sustainable performance are varied in terms of the scale, components and input. This study has identified and tabulated the most relevant tools for quantifying the features and carbon services of green infrastructure. This will help policymakers, environmental groups and researchers to choose the most appropriate tool(s) for the intended context and it will lead them to a more useful and accurate carbon foot printing assessment outcome.

Key words: Green infrastructure, greenhouse gas emissions, carbon performance, assessment, valuation toolkits, sustainability, infrastructure

TUKUP7 (cont)-5-8781681_a.pdf

Results from the LUCIL research project for climate-smart urban planning in Lagos megacity, Nigeria

Ahmed Balogun1, Vincent Ojeh2, Sofia Thorsson3

1Federal University of Technology, Akure, Nigeria; 2West African Science Service Centre on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL), Graduate Research Programme in West African Climate systems (GRP-WACS), Federal University of Technology, Akure, Nigeria; 3Urban Climate Group, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Gothenburg

Ahmed Balogun1, Vincent Ojeh2 Sofia Thorsson3 and Jimmy Adegoke4

1. Department of Meteorology, Federal University of Technology, Akure, P. M. B. 704, Akure , Nigeria

2. West African Science Service Centre on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL), Graduate Research Programme in West African Climate systems (GRP-WACS), Federal University of Technology, Akure, P. M. B. 704, Akure , Nigeria

3. Urban Climate Group, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Gothenburg

Box 460, SE-405 30 Göteborg, Sweden

4. Center for Applied Environmental Research (CAER), Department of Geosciences, University of Missouri, Kansas City MO 64110 USA

Email:,, and


The urban heat island (UHI) is a well-known effect of urbanisation and is particularly important in world megacities of which Lagos, Nigeria is one. Overheating in such cities is expected to be exacerbated in the future as a result of further urban growth and climate change. Quantifying the UHI and demonstrating the impact of individual design interventions to ameliorate its effects is currently difficult due to lack of data and understanding of the phenomenon in Lagos.

The purpose of this article is to give an overview and some preliminary results from the ongoing research that is being conducted as part of the LUCIL (‘The Assessment of the Local Urban Climate in Lagos) research project and its application to the planning of a sustainable future climate-smart and resilient megacity.

The UHI effect is significant and there is a growing recognition of the existence of the complex relationship between built form, urban processes, local temperature, comfort, energy use and health. Developers and planners are seeking advice on design decisions at a variety of scales based on scientifically robust, quantitative methods. The LUCIL project will develop a set of tools that (1) quantify the effect of urbanisation processes on local environmental conditions, and (2) quantify the impact of such conditions on thermal comfort, energy demand and health. The use of such tools is vital, both to inform policy but also to be able to demonstrate compliance with it.