Urban areas that face disproportionate heat conditions will be studied by state environmental officials under a measure signed Friday by Gov. Kathy Hochul.
The new law will assess the effects of so-called urban heat islands in low-income and disadvantaged neighborhoods of New York state.
These communities often lack trees or potential ways of reducing heat through air conditioning or pools. Urban heat islands are only expected to get worse amid the effects of climate change.
"Extreme heat threatens the lives and welfare of many New Yorkers each year, but particularly those in disadvantaged communities and communities of color," Hochul said. "As we round out Climate Week, we are taking steps to address extreme heat and combat climate change. This study will put us on a path toward protecting New Yorkers and making the state a healthier, more sustainable place to live for future generations."
The Department of Environmental Conversation will study the effects of heat conditions in cities and recommend ways of addressing the issue through funding infrastructure improvements and reducing health impacts.