The researchers combined Landsat and MODIS data in a land model to assess the impact of urbanization on US surface climate. For cities built within forests, daytime urban land surface temperature (LST) is much higher than that of vegetated lands. For example, in Washington DC and Atlanta, daytime mean temperature differences between impervious and vegetated lands reach 3.3 and 2.0 °C, respectively. Conversely, for cities built within arid lands, such as Phoenix, urban areas are 2.2 °C cooler than surrounding shrubs.