An urban Heat Wave Vulnerability Index (HWVI) is created and tested in Beijing and different districts in the city. It is based on a limited number of indicators, but enough indicators to effectively measure heat wave vulnerability. The HWVI developed uses data on 9 individual indicators covering the three core components exposure, sensibility and adaptive capacity. Testing the HWVI shows that heat wave vulnerability increased slightly in Beijing in the period of 2008 to 2016. Vulnerability differs between the 16 districts of Beijing. High vulnerability is observed in the urban downtown area and development areas, lower vulnerability is measured in the urban periphery. Very low vulnerability is found in the ecological conservation areas of some districts. This study develops and applies a methodological approach that could serve other mega cities in developing heat wave adaptation policies. Findings are relevant for Beijing to develop its climate change adaptation actions.
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