LAND SURFACE TEMPERATURE AS AN INDICATOR OF URBAN HEAT ISLAND EFFECT: A GOOGLE EARTH ENGINE BASED WEB-APP
Keywords: Surface urban heat island, Google Earth Engine, Land Surface Temperature, MODIS, Landsat, Sustainable Development Goals
Abstract. At least 2 billion urban occupants will be concentrated in Asia and Africa, amounting to 70% of the global population by 2050. This rapid urbanization has caused an innate effect on the ecology and environment, which further results in intense temperature variations in urban and rural areas, especially in India. According to a recent IPCC report, 8 out of the 15 hottest cities in the world are situated in India. The rising industrial work, construction activities, type of material used for construction, and other factors have reduced thermal cooling and created temperature imbalance, thereby creating a vicious effect called “urban heat island” (UHI) or “surface urban heat island” (SUHI). Several researchers have also related it with climate change due to their contribution to the greenhouse effect and global warming. In this study, we have particularly emphasized northern India, including Punjab, Rajasthan, Haryana, and Delhi. We created a Google Earth Engine (GEE) based Web-App to assess the UHI intensity over the past 15 years (2003–2018). We are using Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) images, Landsat 5, 7, and 8 data for studying UHI. The land surface temperature (LST) based UHI intensity (day and night time) will be available for major metropolitan cities with their respective clusters. With feasibility in SUHI monitoring, we can address an increasing need for resilient, sustainable, and safe urban planning of our cities as portrayed under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG 11 highlighted by United Nations).