Prominent Research Lab Reinforces Urban Heat Island Strategies

Along with members of the Southwest Pacific Concrete Alliance, NRMCA’s Tien Peng participated in the Benefits of Reflective Pavements workshop on June 19 in Berkeley, CA. This lecture and demonstration event hosted by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) highlighted the improved pedestrian safety, increased pavement durability, improved air quality and the cooling benefits of concrete. Leading experts that presented included:
Dr. Melvin Pomerantz LBNL Heat Island Group
Dr. K. Ziedman, leading expert on roadway illumination
Dr. James Signore, UC Pavement Research Center
Abby Young, principal environmental planner, Bay Area Air Quality Management District

While the LBNL Heat Island Group has been conducting research on urban heat island (UHI) and cool communities since the 1980s, municipalities are only now starting to implement the recommendation from the research in their planning activities. Events such as this allow regulators and decision makers to hear from research scientists and allow industry professionals to support their findings. Approximately 80 engineers, architects and a number of planning officials from California attended the event.

Urban heat islands are caused by the use of dark colored pavements and roofing in urban areas, where temperatures can reach 3-7 degrees higher than surrounding rural areas. One of the most effective methods of reducing urban heat islands is to use light colored pavements and cladding such as concrete. The next step for LBNL Heat Island Group is to better understand the effects of cool surfaces on school yards. Peng will work with LBNL to identify recent projects from affiliate members can be considered for case studies.

For more information, click here or contact Tien Peng at 206-913-8535 or with potential case study projects.

National Ready Mixed Concrete Association