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Amplifying EPA’s Heat Island Reduction Program


  • EPA strives to raise awareness of heat islands and the methods for cooling them.
  • Abt has developed messages, and the means of disseminating them online.
  • More than half a million people have engaged with EPA’s heat island content since 2019.
The Challenge

Structures such as buildings and roads, absorb and re-emit much more of the sun’s heat than do natural landscapes such as forests and bodies of water. Urban areas with highly concentrated structures become “islands” of higher temperatures compared to natural landscapes. The goal of the U.S. EPA’s Heat Island Reduction Program is to increase awareness of these “heat islands,” share information on heat island cooling strategies, and encourage individuals and local governments to adopt them.

The Approach

To increase public awareness of heat islands and arm communities with actionable solutions, Abt launched Cool Your Community as part of EPA’s Heat Island Reduction Program. Cool Your Community is a social media toolkit available in English and Spanish geared to mobilizing a community-led response to reduce heat-induced stress. It includes slogans, graphics, and hashtags that can be disseminated via social media.

The Results

Since 2019, program offerings—including web content, newsletters, and webinars—have reached more than half a million people. Abt conducts regular webinars for the program  and publishes a quarterly newsletter to raise awareness.


Heat Island Newsletter