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What is a heat island?

îlot de chaleut, heat island

There is a difference in temperature between the city and the countryside.

The cities are warmer than the surrounding countryside. These differences are especially marked at the end of the day. Several factors operate during the day.

In the countryside, solar energy is used by plants to extract water from the soil through the roots, which evaporates into the atmosphere. The remaining energy is used to heat the air. The vegetation and the ground are warming up a bit.

In town, impervious surfaces and buildings will also heat the area. Above all, these surfaces will heat up and store a lot of energy.

At night, the air in the countryside will cool rapidly. Warmer urban surfaces will limit this cooling. This urban heat island is accentuated by massive urbanization.

During heat waves or heat waves, the temperature in the city is less and less bearable. This temperature poses real health problems. Temperatures can rise 5 to 7 degrees higher in the center of a city.

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