Policy Solution

Heat hotlines

Awareness and Engagement


Summary: Heat hotines are telephone helplines that can provide information during a heat wave to members of the public. Hotline operators can share information on how to access cooling resources like cooling centers, identify symptoms of heat-related illness in real-time, and connect users with emergency services as necessary. Heat hotlines can prevent heat-related illness and death by connecting users with resources.

Implementation: Establish a telephone hotline to provide real-time advice to members of the public on extreme heat and resources for cooling.

Considerations for Use: Depending on climate, hotlines can be active year-round or at select high-risk times of year (e.g. seasonally or during a heat wave).

  • Policy Levers:

    Awareness and EngagementGovernments may design and operate programs with the goal of increasing awareness and engagement among constituents or stakeholder groups about the risks and opportunities of extreme heat.
  • Trigger Points:

    No-regrets actions (low cost/low effort but substantial benefit)Interventions that are relatively low-cost and low effort (in terms of requisite dependencies) but have substantial environmental and/or social benefits.
  • Intervention Type:
  • Sectors:
    Disaster Risk Management  , Informal Settlements, Public Health


  • Target Beneficiaries:
    Heat-vulnerable communities, Residents
  • Phase of Impact:
    Emergency response and management
  • Metrics:
    Number of calls received


  • Intervention Scale:
    City, State/Province
  • Authority and Governance:
    City government, State/provincial government
  • Implementation Timeline:
    Short-term (1-2 Years)
  • Implementation Stakeholders:
    CBOs, City government
  • Funding Sources:
    Grants and philanthropy, Public investment
  • Capacity to Act:
    High, Medium


  • Cost-Benefit:
  • Public Good:
  • GHG Reduction:
  • Co-benefits (Climate/Environmental):
    Provide flood protection
  • Co-benefits (Social):
    Build social cohesion, Improve human health