Heat Islands Intensify
St. Louis Summer for Many

Heat map landscape of St. Louis summer 2021
Image Credit: Esri, USGS | Esri, FAO, NOAA | The Trust for Public Land, Descartes Labs, USGS

Heat islands in cities like St. Louis are getting more dangerous, according to a recent report, The Effects of Historical Housing Policies on Resident Exposure to Intra-Urban Heat,. “As climate change brings hotter, more frequent and longer heatwaves, the same historically underserved neighborhoods – often where lower-income households and communities of color still live – will face the greatest impact,” the report said.

Deadly urban heatwaves disproportionately affect underserved neighborhoods because of the legacy of housing policies which have denied African Americans home ownership and basic public services, the landmark new study has found.


Extreme heat kills hundreds of people in the US every year – more than any other hazardous weather event, including hurricanes, tornadoes and flooding, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

However, exposure to extreme heat is unequal: temperatures in different neighborhoods within the same city can vary by 20F. It is mostly lower-income households and communities of color who live in these urban “heat islands” which have historically had fewer green spaces and tree canopy, and more concrete and pavements and thus are less equipped to cope with the mounting effects of global heating.


This satellite map details areas of St. Louis where heat islands form during the summer. These areas do
not cool down at night, magnifying the problem.

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We install home weatherization materials, setup portable heaters and electric blankets, or simply give out standard blankets for immediate warmth. For the heat we install window air conditioners.