Paint the Town White! (or at least the rooftops)

4 Nov

As a representative of NYU’s Green Alumni Network, I had the pleasure of crashing a rooftop party, but of a different kind. I cleaned and prepared the roof of the Foundation House Women’s Shelter on 424 West 47th Street with the NYU community for the weekend’s “white roof” painting.

You may ask yourself, why is painting this roof important? And why white? Isn’t that color a faux pas after Labor Day?

Well, it’s not so much about the clothes you’re wearing, but about the color you’re painting the roof you’re partying on. As it turns out, we laid the foundation for the weekend group’s efforts to help the building cut energy costs (reducing 1 degree = $100 million saved!) with special white reflective coating, which reflects the sun’s rays back into the atmosphere as opposed to inducing the Heat Island Effect. Mayor Bloomberg, in a semi-unrelated event, coated one millionth square foot of a white rooftop to promote NYC Service’s Cool Roofs Initiative to paint hot black roofs, lower energy used for cooling, and lower greenhouse gas emissions by 30% citywide with the use of White Roof tops by 2030, a prime goal of PlaNYC, the city’s comprehensive sustainability plan. Click here for the press release.

Where would we be without the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, better known as NYSERDA? NYSERDA administers the New York Energy $martSM program, which provides energy efficiency services. What’s more, New York State offers funding and incentives for homeowners and commercial building operators to install Cool Roofs as a payback.

Even better, our efforts are part of 350.org‘s 10/10/10 “Global Work Party” to fight climate change, bring people together to make “glocal” (local + global) change (people at 7347 events in 188 countries got to work on the climate crisis!), and voice the public’s growing concerns for November’s Climate Summit in Cancun, Mexico, where the world’s politicians will meet and try to move forward with the United Nation’s Framework Convention on Climate Change. Coincidentally, October 10th, 2010 is 10 weeks before the Summit. Plus, the 10:10 Campaign is so easy to remember, 10/10/10!

“Think Globally, Act Locally.” Wait, I know I heard that somewhere…

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One Response to “Paint the Town White! (or at least the rooftops)”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. 2010 Pumpkin Festival at the Central Park Bandshell « Diaries of the Greenest NYer - November 10, 2010

    […] already this season. Trees and flowers were planted and distributed. Leaves changed color.  People painted roofs white. Others got a workout from the inaugural Green City Challenge. Speaking of which, let’s not […]

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