L.A.’s bright idea: Paint streets white to fight global warming


Los Angeles paints streets white to reduce effect of 'heat islands' (Photo: LA Street Services)

Los Angeles paints streets white to reduce effect of ‘heat islands’ (Photo: LA Street Services)

Never mind that incredible glare when you’re trying to navigate your vehicle down Los Angeles streets on a hot, sunny day – the city insists on painting its streets white to fight climate change.

LA Street Services began the street-painting project last May after testing revealed the paint reduced road temperatures by 10 degrees. The product is meant to reduce the effect of urban “heat islands.”

The coating isn’t actually white. It’s a light gray product called CoolSeal, and it’s manufactured by GuardTop.

But whatever the color, the effect is certainly blinding.

And it costs a pretty penny, too. Each mile of CoolSeal coating costs $40,000, and two coats last up to seven years. T

he product is sprayed onto the roads and spread across the surface with squeegees.

(Photo: LA Street Services)

(Photo: LA Street Services)

“CoolSeal is applied like conventional sealcoats to asphalt surfaces to protect and maintain the quality and longevity of the surface,” the company website states. “While most cool pavements on the market are polymer based, CoolSeal is a water-based, asphalt emulsion.”

Officials believe the coating will reduce temperatures in locations where it is applied. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that dark asphalt can add as many as 22 degrees Fahrenheit to air temperatures compared with areas that do not have asphalt.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is a key advocate of street painting to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“Climate change is a fact of life that people in Los Angeles and cities around the world live with every day,” Garcetti said in 2017 after President Trump announced he would abandon the Paris Climate Agreement. “It is a grave threat to our health, our Click to see the original article