ASU Sights Unintended Consequences of Reflective Pavements

The Green Building Law blog recently discussed the National Center of Excellence for SMART Innovations at Arizona State University (ASU) report outlining multiple negative consequences of relying upon reflective pavements as a mitigation strategy for the urban heat island effect (UHI).

The ASU report found growing evidence of substantial unintended consequences associated with widespread implementation of reflective pavements, including the potential for increased cooling loads in adjacent buildings; increased heating demands during cold weather; roadway snow and ice buildup during winter months; reduction in precipitation, runoff, and soil water content; and adverse human health impacts.

Stuart Kaplow of the Green Building Law blog writes, “Given the growing body of evidence of unintended consequences associated with reflective pavements and the potential negative impact they may have on energy usage, it is time the drafters of green building standards, rating systems and codes reevaluate the science and be prepared to eliminate provisions, including credits for urban heat island effect mitigation based solely upon a pavement's reflectivity.”

Click Here to read the full report!