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Policy Solution

Heat emergency response plan



Creating a heat emergency response plan can help governments anticipate heat waves and minimize loss of life. A heat emergency response plan will identify vulnerable populations, set standards to forecast and categorize heat waves, and identify roles and responsibilities for different stakeholders during high-heat events.


Coordinate with local, regional, state/provincial, and/or national entities to prepare a heat emergency response plan.

Considerations for Use

Emergency response plans should be regularly tested and updated. Preventative and emergency communication plans and materials should be included.


  • Climate:

    Cold, Hot/Dry, Hot/Humid, Temperate
  • Policy Levers:

    CommitmentGovernments set ambitious goals or targets to guide prioritization and investment.
  • Trigger Points:

    City planning processesIncludes city initiatives such as the development of climate action plan, pathway to zero-energy, master plan, transit plan, energy mapping etc.
    Preparatory measures (actions to establish authority to act)Actions to establish/ensure the authority to act when appropriate trigger-points occur.
  • Intervention Types:

  • Sectors:

    Disaster Risk Management, Informal Settlements, Public Health

Case Studies


  • Target Beneficiaries:

    Heat-vulnerable communities, Residents
  • Phase of Impact:

    Emergency response and management
  • Metrics:

    Reduction in heat-related deaths


  • Intervention Scale:

    City, Region, State/Province
  • Authority and Governance:

    City government, National government, State/provincial government
  • Implementation Timeline:

    Short-term (1-2 Years)
  • Implementation Stakeholders:

    CBOs, City government, Industry, National government, Property owners and managers, Public, State/provincial government
  • Funding Sources:

    Public investment
  • Capacity to Act:

    High, Medium


  • Cost-Benefit:

  • Public Good:

  • GHG Reduction:

  • Co-benefits (Climate/Environmental):

  • Co-benefits (Social/Economic):

    Build community capacity, Build social cohesion, Improve human health