NYC ºCoolRoofs is a collaboration between NYC Service and the Department of Buildings where we encourage building owners to cool their rooftops with a white reflective coating to reduce energy consumption, cooling costs and carbon emissions.
The program supports New York City’s goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2030, as represented in Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC2030.
To further strengthen community involvement, the City partnered with Community Environmental Center (CEC), the largest energy conservation nonprofit in New York State, and Sustainable South Bronx to coat another 1 million square feet of NYC rooftops during the 2013 season.
NYC ºCoolRoofs has coated over 3.6 million sq ft of rooftops across 415 buildings and engaged over 4,000 volunteers since the program began in 2010.
To suggest a roof, please click here to inquire about the NYC °CoolRoofs Program.
(NOTE: You must have a flat roof that is NOT gravel to participate.)
Click here if you are interested in volunteering!
Click here for the DIY Toolkit.
White reflective rooftops help reduce cooling costs and lengthen the life of the roofing material. The reflective surface also helps alleviate the urban heat island effect, which has a direct impact on global warming. The urban heat island effect is the common phenomenon of urban areas being 5 to 10 degrees warmer than the surrounding suburban and rural areas.
The urban heat island effect is due to a higher incidence of non-reflective, non-vegetative surfaces like asphalt, black and grey rooftops, and other built up materials. By replacing vegetation with these materials the urban areas absorb more heat from the sun during the day, and those areas consistently stay warmer than the surrounding areas with less heat absorbing surfaces. This has a big effect locally (5-7 degrees in NYC), but also makes a difference across the world. A reflective roof is now part of the NYC Building Code, and all new roofs are required to be reflective.