And third, most of our temperature monitoring focuses on air temperature, measured at about 2 meters (about 6.5 feet) above the ground surface. However, temperatures measured on the ground surface may differ from air temperature, especially in the sun. Surface temperatures are harder to measure continuously with passive data loggers.
To understand and quantify the differences between field-measured air and surface temperatures in the GRIT neighborhood, we engaged 32 people on a hot August day in 2022 to help us measure surface temperatures. Based on data collected that day, we estimate the presence of a large tree in the neighborhood can cool surface temperatures by 28ºF (15.6ºC) on average (compared to cooling air temperature by 2.9ºF [1.6ºC] on average). We plan to do another surface temperature monitoring and engagement event on May 13, 2023. Come join us for this “Temperature Jamboree” if you’re interested to learn more about this collaborative research project!
These preliminary analyses, and the data we collect at the Jamboree, will be incorporated into scientific manuscripts and may be used to inform future tree planting and other activities.