Urban heating islands are making spaces less livable day by day. Combating the same with roofing solutions and solar panels is emerging as the new trend.
FREMONT, CA: Growing industrialization and urbanization have contributed significantly to the phenomenon called heat island effect. Heat island effect takes place when the temperature in a particular area is higher than the actual atmospheric temperature owing to absorption of heat into artificial materials that are used in roofing and metaling of roads and the other regions. These areas absorb heat but are not able to efficiently reflect it, thereby increasing the temperatures in the immediate vicinity.
The urban heat island effect is an issue of highest concern as it leads to severe discomfort. Sometimes it may even cause health reactions like heat strokes. It is essential to manage the problem and mitigate it at the earliest. A few methods by which heating can be reduced are discussed here.
• Roofing solutions
Forgo conventional roofing materials and opt for a material that can give a cooler roof. Technological advancements have created several alternatives which can provide better results. In such type of roofs, the amount of heat absorbed is significantly less. After considering climatic and other factors, one can decide among the available options of cool roof materials like sheets, paint, tiles or shingles. Green roofs which involve plants on the rooftop surface are useful in cooling. Using solar panels on the rooftop not only insulate the roof from harsh heating but also collect the heat and convert it into usable energy.
• Adopting Solar Power and Solar Roof Tiles
Solar energy, which is captured during the day time using solar panels, can be very effective in managing urban heat island effects. Solar panels placed on rooftops minimize the area required for construction, thereby enabling the retention of open spaces that can contribute to adequate reflection. If taken up on a large scale, solar panels can improve the situation substantially.
• Better Urban Planning
Well planned urbanization can minimize the impact of heat islands in urban areas. Simple planning measure such as open green spaces like parks, regulated construction, unmetalled sidewalks, and protection of wetlands in and around the city, planting trees and creating awareness among residents can contribute to reducing heat absorption onto concrete and asphalt surfaces..
As population levels rise and greenery reduces, people have to take up innovative solutions that can solve problems like urban heat island effect before they become any more threatening.