Recent News & Events

‘Cool Walls’ Get a Boost from U.S. Green Building Council

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Sunlight-reflecting “cool walls” have been shown to reduce energy costs by lowering heat gain in buildings. But they do more – reflective walls can also cool cities, fighting the urban heat island


Tall building with white walls

Ronnen Levinson on NPR's Science Friday

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Last week Ronnen Levinson, leader of the Berkeley Lab Heat Island Group, was featured on NPR's Science Friday broadcast. He was invited to join the program to discuss cool surfaces and other city-cooling strategies on the segment "Hot Enough For You?


Image for NPR's Science Friday

Call for presentations for Cool Building Solutions for a Warming World workshop

Friday, April 26, 2019

The Heat Island Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) is collaborating with the broader urban heat island (UHI) countermeasures community to identify and assess UHI countermeasures (e.g., high-reflectance surfaces, wet surfaces



NEW: International Million Cool Roofs Challenge

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Our collaborator Global Cool Cities just announced the Million Cool Roofs Challenge -- an unprecedented, $2 million effort to create cooler communities in places that need it most.  

The Challenge is made up of two parts: an outcome-


Egyptian Blue for Energy Efficiency

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

A color developed by Egyptians thousands of years ago has a modern-day application as well – the pigment can boost energy efficiency by cooling rooftops and walls, and could also enable solar generation of electricity via windows.

Egyptian blue


Berkeley Lab Takes Home 2016 R&D 100 Award for Cool Roof Time Machine

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

R&D Magazine's R&D 100 Awards, established 54 years ago, recognize 100 technologies and services introduced in the previous year deemed most significant by an independent panel of judges. This year's winners received the awards at a November 3


The Cool Roof Time Machine Team with their 2016 R&D 100 Award

Not All Cool Pavements Are Created Equal

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Berkeley Lab finds that the choice of pavement material can significantly impact carbon emissions, creates decision tool for cities to use

Cool pavements can help keep cities cool, right? Yes, but according to new research from the Department of


Road construction with fresh asphalt (Credit: wabeno/iStock)

R&D Awards for Energy Technologies Area

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Two projects within the Energy Technologies Area won honors at the 2016 R&D 100 Awards, an international science and technology competition. The research — Cool Roof Time Machine and Sustainable and Affordable Fluoride Removal (SAFR)—joins three


Berkeley Lab research associate Sharon Chen sprays roofing material with soiling mixture in a lab method that simulates the aging of roofing materials. (Photo by Roy Kaltschmidt/Berkeley Lab)

Fluorescent Ruby Red Roofs Stay as Cool as White

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Elementary school science teaches us that in the sun, dark colors get hot while white stays cool. Now new research from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) has found an exception: Scientists have determined that certain dark pigments


Your Air Conditioning is Making the Heat Wave Worse

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

While air conditioning temporarily cools, it’s making our world hotter. According to Berkeley Lab researchers, a crash program to maintain or establish three shade trees per building and make all roofs and pavement in U.S. cities reflective could


Residential air conditioning units