PhD Proposal by Dana M. Habeeb

Event Details
  • Date/Time:
    • Tuesday June 16, 2015 - Wednesday June 17, 2015
      1:00 pm - 3:59 pm
  • Location: Arch (East) 217
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Summary Sentence: Exploring Urban Agriculture as a Climate Change Mitigation Strategy at the Neighborhood Scale

Full Summary: No summary paragraph submitted.





Under the provisions of the regulations for the degree



on Tuesday, June 16, 2015

1:00 – 4:00 PM
in Arch (East) 217

will be held the





Dana M. Habeeb


"Exploring Urban Agriculture as a Climate Change Mitigation Strategy at the Neighborhood Scale"


The Examiners Are:


Dr. Brian Stone, Jr., Chairperson

Dr. Michael Elliott

Dr. Armistead Russell


Faculty and students are invited to attend this examination.




Extreme heat events are responsible for more annual fatalities in the United States than any other form of extreme weather. Urban centers are particularly vulnerable to the threats of excessive heat as most cities are home to large populations of lower income individuals who often lack access to air conditioning or adequate healthcare facilities. Urban populations are also more likely to be exposed to extreme heat due to the urban heat island (UHI) phenomenon. As the global population continues to urbanize, the number of vulnerable individuals will continue to increase making urban heat island mitigation strategies all the more important.


In my research I explore urban agriculture as an urban heat island mitigation strategy at the neighborhood scale. Though previous work has examined the role of vegetation in mitigating the UHI effect, the potential of urban agriculture as a mitigation strategy is an unexplored research area. The aim of the dissertation is to demonstrate the potential for urban agriculture to cool the local climate by lowering temperatures in urban areas. I will compare urban agriculture to other vegetative strategies, examine urban agriculture typologies and the urban form of neighborhoods to understand how form and context drive cooling effects, and will explore how well urban agriculture maintains its cooling strength during extreme heat conditions. Finally I will investigate the strategy of converting vacant parcels to urban agriculture in an effort to assess the opportunities that many cities presently have to quickly implement change. The research will be conducted in the city of Atlanta, GA, as Atlanta has one of the fastest growing urban heat islands and has exhibited significant increasing trends in heat waves.


To investigate the effect of urban agriculture on local climate, I will utilize two different methods. First, I will employ satellite temperature data and land cover data to estimate how converting land to urban agriculture impacts local temperatures, I will investigate how urban form at the neighborhood scale impacts the relationship between urban agriculture and local climate, and I will argue that urban agriculture should not only be placed in cities, but that the morphology of the built environment should be taken into consideration when selecting locations for urban agriculture. Second, I will employ a local climate simulation model: LUMPS (Local-scale Urban Meteorological Parameterization Scheme). LUMPS combines meteorological observations with land cover and urban form characteristics to simulate the impact of urban interventions on the local climate. Using LUMPS, I will simulate the climate at the neighborhood scale before and after an urban agricultural intervention to investigate the climatological potential of converting vacant parcels in cities into urban agriculture.


My research builds on work currently examining the potential of urban agriculture to effectively revitalize neighborhoods with vacant properties and to reclaim brownfield sites in urban areas. When designing heat mitigation strategies, it is important for planners and policy makers to quantify the difference between vegetative approaches in order to understand the tradeoffs they are making climatically, environmentally, and socially. As such the results of my research can help guide planners when selecting between vegetative UHI mitigation strategies and may further support the burgeoning urban agriculture movement.

Additional Information

In Campus Calendar

Graduate Studies

Invited Audience
arch, graduate students, PhD, proposal
  • Created By: Tatianna Richardson
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: Jun 2, 2015 - 4:47am
  • Last Updated: Oct 7, 2016 - 10:12pm