Greenpeace has recently come out with a pretty great (and totally adorable) ad campaign to promote the white roof movement. Their new “White is the New Green” ads encourage residents nationwide to paint their roofs white, not only to conserve energy and cool down their local environment, but to take the necessary steps in preserving the natural habitats of polar animals.
Black tar and shingled roofs can reach a surface temperature of nearly 200 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer, contributing significantly to the environment’s growing heat issues and energy waste. The extreme temperatures are not only sweltering for citizens and cities, but also melting northern ice caps and destroying the homes of animals such as polar bears, arctic foxes and hares.
If rescuing cute animals isn’t a compelling enough argument, money certainly should be. A roof covered with solar-reflective white paint reflects 90 percent of sunlight as opposed to the 20 percent reflected by traditional black roofs. This reduces energy use and air conditioning costs immensely. This equated to $735 million a year, according to Secretary of Energy, Dr. Steven Chu, if 85% of the buildings in the US are to implement white roofs.
We recently reported on a few groups in New York who have been painting the town and gaining national recognition. NYC Cool Roofs, White Tops NYC, and the White Roof Project have painted thousands of square feet of city block roofs with reflective white paint.
Former president Bill Clinton is also an advocate for the cause, saying on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart “Every black roof in New York should be white, every roof in Chicago should be white, every roof in Little Rock should be white. Every flat tar surface roof anywhere! In most of these places you could recover the cost of the paint and the labor in a week.”
Via laughing squid