The University of Arizona is recognized nationally and internationally as a leader in the science of adaptation to climate change, and associated research and outreach to understand climate change, its observed and potential impacts, and possible responses.
Arid Cities in Changing Climates: Urban Land and Water Use in the Desert Southwest
This study of Tucson, Arizona builds on prior research on the urban heat island and water demand in the Southwest conducted in Phoenix, Arizona (Guhathakurta and Gober, 2007). Our study will build on these findings by investigating the impacts on urban irrigation demand of the vegetative canopy in Tucson and multiple sources of water (potable, reclaimed, rainwater harvesting, and graywater) used to irrigate that vegetation. This is the first study conducted on the Tucson urban canopy and its effect on the urban heat island that combines social and physical scientific approaches. Qualitative in-depth interviews, surveys on adaptation to climate change and the urban heat island in Tucson among government, non-government, residential and commercial water users linked analysis of LIDAR images are some of the methods that are being used to collect the data.