Heatwaves & Hope: Co-Creating Las Vegas' Resilient Future with Ariel Choinard

Season #5

Ariel Choinard from the Southern Nevada Heat Resilience Lab joins Will Rucker on Compassionate Las Vegas - The Podcast to discuss the challenges of extreme heat in the Las Vegas area. She explains how the city is the second fastest warming city in America and the impact of the urban heat island effect. Ariel emphasizes the importance of recognizing the unequal impact of heat on different populations, particularly those in socioeconomically disadvantaged neighborhoods. She shares her personal approach to managing the emotional toll of this work and highlights the need for collaboration and community engagement in creating heat resilience. 

Ariel invites listeners to get involved and offers suggestions for volunteering and supporting vulnerable communities. The episode concludes with a discussion on envisioning a heat-adapted Las Vegas and the importance of considering future generations in climate change planning.


Key Takeaways:

  • Las Vegas is the second fastest warming city in America, and the urban heat island effect intensifies the high temperatures.
  • Vulnerable populations, such as black and brown people, the elderly, and those with chronic illnesses, are most impacted by extreme heat.
  • The Southern Nevada Heat Resilience Lab is engaging communities and co-creating solutions to address the challenges of extreme heat.
  • Listening to the voices of those most impacted is crucial in developing effective adaptation measures.
  • A heat-adapted Las Vegas would involve changes in architecture, increased tree canopy, and improved insulation in buildings.