The White Roof Project

In Action, Empowerment, Environment, Sustainability by Carlos Espinal, INHCLeave a Comment

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Founded in 2010 White Roof Project is an non-profit organization that seeks a simple solution to the environmental problems facing the large urban cities of today.

Millions of rooftops in America are made of tar. They absorb an enormous amount of heat during the summer months. By covering black tar roofs with solar-reflective white coating temperatures are immediately reduced inside and out. This low cost solution is a quick and easy way to cut carbon emissions, reduce our risk of ‘brown outs’ caused by stress on the power grid, save millions in energy costs, and even save lives.

Statistics show: A roof covered with solar-reflective white paint reflects up to 90% of sunlight as opposed to the 20% reflected by a traditional black roof. On a 90°F day, a black roof can be up to 180°F while a white roof stays a cool 100°F reducing cooling costs up to 40 percent.

The heating effect caused by these black tar roofs has been dubbed Urban Heat Islands and you can find further information on its environmental effects below.

EPA Heat Island Reduction Program 2009
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Heat Island Group

Energy, Air & Health Impacts

  • Increased energy use
  • Blackouts, brownouts
  • Ozone formation
  • Increased air pollution
  • Increased Green House Gas emissions
  • Respiratory difficulties
  • Heat cramps
  • Heat exhuastion
  • Non-fatal heat stroke/sun stroke
  • Heat related mortality
“For each square meter of cool roof surface deployed, the increased reflectivity is equivalent to offsetting 175 kilograms of carbon dioxide. For the continental U.S., it would achieve a one-time offset of 3.3 gigatons of CO2, or about half of total U.S. emissions in 2009.”Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

White Roof Project wouldn’t be anywhere if it weren’t for volunteers stepping up and putting in work for their communities. Anyone can do it and if you’d like to start a project in your neighborhood please take the time to visit their website or follow these links.

White Roof Project
WRP Do it Yourself Packet
WRP Donations
WRP Committees

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