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COSMO-BEP-Tree v1.0: a coupled urban climate model with explicit representation of street trees

Mussetti, Gianluca and Brunner, Dominik and Henne, Stephan and Allegrini, Jonas and Krayenhoff, E. Scott and Schubert, Sebastian and Feigenwinter, Christian and Vogt, Roland and Wicki, Andreas and Carmeliet, Jan. (2020) COSMO-BEP-Tree v1.0: a coupled urban climate model with explicit representation of street trees. Geoscientific Model Development, 13 (3). pp. 1685-1710.

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Abstract

Street trees are more and more regarded as an effective measure to reduce excessive heat in urban areas. However, the vast majority of mesoscale urban climate models do not represent street trees in an explicit manner and, for example, do not take the important effect of shading by trees into account. In addition, urban canopy models that take interactions of trees and urban fabrics directly into account are usually limited to the street or neighbourhood scale and hence cannot be used to analyse the citywide effect of urban greening. In order to represent the interactions between street trees, urban elements and the atmosphere in realistic regional weather and climate simulations, we coupled the Building Effect Parameterisation with Trees (BEP-Tree) vegetated urban canopy model and the Consortium for Small-scale Modeling (COSMO) mesoscale weather and climate model. The performance and applicability of the coupled model, named COSMO-BEP-Tree, are demonstrated over the urban area of Basel, Switzerland, during the heatwave event of June-July 2015. Overall, the model compared well with measurements of individual components of the surface energy balance and with air and surface temperatures obtained from a flux tower, surface stations and satellites. Deficiencies were identified for nighttime air temperature and humidity, which can mainly be traced back to limitations in the simulation of the nighttime stable boundary layer in COSMO. The representation of street trees in the coupled model generally improved the agreement with observations. Street trees produced large changes in simulated sensible and latent heat flux, and wind speed. Within the canopy layer, the presence of street trees resulted in a slight reduction in daytime air temperature and a very minor increase in nighttime air temperature. The model was found to realistically respond to changes in the parameters defining the street trees: leaf area density and stomatal conductance. Overall, COSMO-BEP-Tree demonstrated the potential of (a) enabling city-wide studies on the cooling potential of street trees and (b) further enhancing the modelling capabilities and performance in urban climate modelling studies.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Ehemalige Einheiten Umweltwissenschaften > Meteorologie (Parlow)
05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Geowissenschaften > Atmospheric Sciences (Kalberer)
UniBasel Contributors:Feigenwinter, Christian and Vogt, Roland and Wicki, Andreas
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Copernicus
ISSN:1991-959X
e-ISSN:1991-9603
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
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Last Modified:29 Apr 2020 07:49
Deposited On:29 Apr 2020 07:49

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