PROJECT SUMMARY Project goals are to investigate fundamental natural and human processes governing agricultural and urban climate systems and develop next generation predictive capabilities and mitigation strategies on decadal time scales. The project approach focuses on five Research Themes: WRF Crop and Urban Agriculture, Landscapes and Climate, Urban Meteorology and Climate, Socio-Economic Analysis, and Applications. Researchers will: (1) predictively model interactions of the urban land surface with the atmosphere and characterize the influence of soil moisture, soil temperature, vegetation, urban development and other landscape features on regional weather, climate, agriculture and the water cycle; (2) improve forecasting capabilities to predict extreme events including the behavior of storms over urban areas, forests, croplands and burn areas after a major fire; (3) develop methods to understand how fast growing urban areas that absorb sunlight and heat up the immediate atmosphere effect local precipitation, wind flow, diurnal energy use and air pollution patterns; (4) characterize anthropogenic heating of urban climate due to human activities including air conditioning use; (5) develop fast and scalable numerical algorithms and solvers for nested mesoscale/microscale simulations; (6) integrate mesoscale modeling systems that are being developed at Arizona State University (ASU) and National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) [advanced research version of the WRF mesoscale model] with USDA crop models; (7) propose mitigation strategies for sustainable megapolitan expansion in a changing climate; (8) estimate economic and social benefits. Throughout the project, methodological developments will be steered by a closed-loop validation plan that incorporates both high resolution simulations and experimental test data. Validation and verification efforts will focus on a limited collection of focused scenarios involving agricultural and urban datasets. Nonetheless, the techniques Researchers develop will be cross-cutting. This project will involve a collaborative academic group consisting of computational and climate scientists, mathematicians, statisticians and geoscientists and researchers from ASU and NCAR. The two groups will collaborate in two key areas: development of high resolution models (urbanized WRF and WRF Crop) for agricultural and urban applications and providing multi-disciplinary training in computational geosciences and climate sciences for graduate students and a post-doctoral researcher. Intellectual Merits: This study will advance the understanding and modeling capabilities of complex, multi-scale agricultural and urban processes on decadal time scales in a changing global climate. It undertakes cutting-edge research of physical processes and high performance computing in nested simulations, with one cross-fertilizing the other, thus enabling studies on emergent behaviors, including urban meteorology and physics-based predictive climate modeling for integrated agricultural and urban applications. It will also produce fundamental knowledge regarding techniques for generating forecasts of the economic and social impacts of community gardens, which are increasingly critical to the social fabric, food security and wellness of local communities. Broader Impacts: The novel multiscale modeling, statistical and computational techniques to be developed will serve as a new paradigm for studies of regional agricultural and urban climate systems on decadal time scales, which will be critically important for policy making. It will lay the foundation to assess the impact of projected climatic change on urban climate, water and agriculture via end-to-end high resolution nested simulations, thereby providing vital information for agricultural and urban planning and mitigation of climate impacts. Training of graduate students and young scientists to undertake interdisciplinary computational studies on integrated agricultural and urban systems and conduct policy discussions based on research results will also be attributes of the project. Finally, several policy forums will be held to disseminate the project results.
Effective start/end date9/1/148/31/19


  • National Science Foundation (NSF): $1,161,522.00


urban climate
urban area
urban agriculture
air conditioning
urban system
social impact
climate effect
extreme event
economic analysis