Projected risks associated with heat stress in the UK Climate Projections (UKCP18)

Kennedy-Asser, Alan, Owen, Gwilym, Griffith, Gareth J., Andrews, Oliver, Lo, Y. T. Eunice, Mitchell, Dann M., Jenkins, Katie ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6740-5139 and Warren, Rachel F. (2022) Projected risks associated with heat stress in the UK Climate Projections (UKCP18). Environmental Research Letters, 17 (3). ISSN 1748-9326

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Abstract

Summer heat extremes in the UK pose a risk to health (amongst other sectors) and this is exacerbated by localised socio-economic factors that contribute to vulnerability. Here, regional climate model simulations from the UK Climate Projections are used to assess how different elements of extreme heat will vary across the UK in the future under global mean surface temperature warming levels of +1.5 °C, +2.0 °C and +3.0 °C above pre-industrial. Heat stress metrics incorporating daily maximum and minimum temperature, temperature variability and vapour pressure are included. These show qualitatively similar spatial patterns for the recent past, with the most pronounced heat hazards found in south-eastern regions of the UK. Projected heat hazard changes across the UK are not homogeneous, with southern regions (e.g. Greater London, South East) showing greater increases in maximum temperatures and northern regions (e.g. Scotland and Northern Ireland) showing greater increases in humidity. With +3.0 °C warming, the relative change in combined heat hazards is found to be greatest in the south-western UK, however, in absolute terms, south-eastern regions will still experience the greatest hazards. When combined with socio-economic factors, hotspots of high heat stress risk emerge in parts of London, the Midlands and eastern England along with southern and eastern coastal regions. Weighting of different heat risk factors is subjective and to this end we have developed and made available an interactive app which allows users to assess sensitivities and uncertainties in the projected UK heat risk.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Funding Information: A K A, O A and R W acknowledge support from the UK Research & Innovation (UKRI) Strategic Priorities Fund UK Climate Resilience programme (NE/S017267/1 and NE/T013931/1). The programme is co-delivered by Met Office and NERC on behalf of UKRI partners AHRC, EPSRC, ESRC. G G is funded by an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship (ES/T009101/1). YTEL was funded under the NERC project, HAPPI-Health (NE/R009554/1). D M M acknowledges a NERC fellowship (NE/N014057/1) and Turing Institute fellowship. Development of this Shiny App was supported by funds from Policy Bristol.
Uncontrolled Keywords: app,climate,heat,risk,uk,ukcp18,public health, environmental and occupational health,environmental science(all),renewable energy, sustainability and the environment,sdg 13 - climate action ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2700/2739
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science
Faculty of Science > School of Environmental Sciences
Related URLs:
Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 18 Mar 2022 17:30
Last Modified: 22 Oct 2022 17:36
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/84140
DOI: 10.1088/1748-9326/ac541a

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