HOUSTON – The Climate Impact Assessment for the City of Houston was released Monday, which includes its forecast for Houston’s long-term climate. The assessment focuses on temperature and precipitation in Greater Houston and was spearheaded by Texas Tech Climate Center’s Amy Stoner and Katharine Hayhoe for the city of Houston.
“This Assessment further links the City’s first resilience strategy, Resilient Houston, released in February 2020 and the City’s first climate action plan, Houston Climate Action Plan, released on the 50th Earth Day in April 2020,” the assessment reads. “The climate science and data within will help inform, guide, and prioritize the implementation of both plans and engage Houstonians in climate mitigation and adaptation education and action.”
Read the full assessment below:
Stoner and Hayhoe have been collecting and analyzing data from 11 weather stations across Greater Houston, focusing on data relating to temperature and precipitation to assess the long-term conditions of Greater Houston’s weather through the year 2100. The study compares the severity of results based on smaller and larger carbon emissions plans, including carbon emission based on the Paris Agreement.
The goal is to bring context to Houston’s long-term plan to create a more sustainable and resilient city.
“This study is one aspect of the Houston Climate Action Plan and our resilience strategy and I encourage every Houstonian to learn more about what sustainability and resilience mean to our community,” said Lara Cottingham, City of Houston Chief Sustainability Officer.
“Temperature and precipitation projections are shown for a lower and higher future scenario that encompass a range of likely futures as a result of human choices and resulting greenhouse gas emissions,” the assessment reads.
Some major findings of the assessment include:
• Increases in the average temperature of all seasons
• Lengthening of summer, with summer beginning earlier and ending later
• Increases in energy demand for cooling buildings for the spring, summer, and fall seasons
• Increases in the number of hot days per year (defined as maximum temperature above 100°F) and the number of warm nights per year (defined as minimum temperature above 80°F)
• Increases in the temperature of the hottest days experienced each year
• Longer multi-day heatwaves
• Little change in total annual precipitation but a decrease in summer precipitation and an increase in fall precipitation
• Greater variability in day-to-day precipitation that includes both…