This program originally aired on July 10. 2023
On June 28, 2021, Portland State Geography Professor Vivek Shandas drove around Portland on this hottest day ever recorded in the city, measuring the temperatures of the pavement in various neighborhoods around town. And what he found was a dramatic discrepancy between the ambient temperatures of the pavement in low income communities - as high as 160 degrees Farenheit - and those of higher income communitiesm which were considerably lower. What caused these significant - and as it turned out lethal - heat islands, particularly in Portland's outer eastside - was the lack of trees and other greenery, adjacent freeways, recent densely packed dark colored construction and a whole lot of asphalt and cement,
On ths episode of Locus Focus we talk with Vivek about the data he compiled two years ago and how much things have changed and not changed since then.
Professor Vivek Shandas specializes developing strategies for addressing the implications of climate change on cities. His teaching and research examine the intersection of exposure to climate-induced events, governance processes, and planning mechanisms. As an interdisciplinary scholar, Dr. Shandas studies the emergent characteristics that generate vulnerability among communities and infrastructure. As the Founder and Director of the Sustaining Urban Places Research (SUPR), he brings a policy-relevant approach to research, including the evaluation of environmental stressors on human health, developing of indicators and tools to improve decision making, and the construction of frameworks to guide the growth of urban regions.