Focus on shading and urban tree canopy to mitigate urban heat islands

Efforts to increase urban shading in Phoenix, Arizona was highlighted in a recent edition of the Resilient Nation Roundup, a publication of FEMA’s Resilient Nation Partnership Network. As described in the e-newsletter, the Phoenix city council voted to partner with American Forests, a Washington, D.C.-based conservation nonprofit, to create an equitable tree canopy across all its neighborhoods by 2030. The city has identified the busiest walking corridors where shade could provide important public health benefits and plans to plant 1,800 trees along nine miles of “cool corridors” each year. The city has also created an Office of Heat Response and Mitigation, which will pay for five new forestry staffers to plant and maintain urban forests.