Saturday, December 13, 2008

One Step--Just One--That Can Help Us Now

White roofs could lower global emissions

Changing the color of roofs and pavement worldwide could potentially offset nearly a year’s worth of global CO2 emissions, according to a study released this week at the Conference on Climate Change in Sacramento, Calif.

Painting a single 1,000 square-foot dark roof white would reduce carbon
emissions by 10 metric tons, according to Lawrence Berkeley National
Laboratory scientists Hashem Akbari and Surabi Menon and California
Energy Commissioner Art Rosenfeld. And changing the color of roofs and
pavement in 100 of the world’s largest cities could reduce global
emissions by 44 billion metric tons, the researchers said.

The world produced 49 billion metric tons of emissions in 2004, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

"This simple and effective idea can organize the world into taking
measured steps to mitigate global warming,” Akbari said in a news
release. “Our findings will help city leaders and urban planners
quantify the amount of CO2 they can offset using white roofs and cool pavements.”

White roofs could cut energy use by buildings by 20 percent, the
researchers said. The equivalent energy reduction would save the U.S.
$1 billion a year in energy costs.

California has already adopted energy-efficient roofing standards. It
has mandated since 2005 that flat roofs on commercial buildings must be

In 2009, the state will expand the regulation to require
cool-colored roofs for flat and sloped roofs on residential and
commercial buildings, as well as retrofitted buildings. The state has
no similar regulations for the color of pavement.

And you can find the report here.

Powered by ScribeFire.

1 comment:

  1. You should attend Green Meetings. UVic holds them. You could make suggestions then. I think there were some sustainability meetings at Moka House too but on Dec 11 & 12.