Painting Neighbourhoods

Artists Jeroen Koolhaas and Dre Urhahn create community art by painting entire neighborhoods, and involving those who live there — from the favelas of Rio to the streets of North Philadelphia. What’s made their projects succeed? In this funny and inspiring talk, the artists explain their art-first approach — and the importance of a neighborhood barbecue.

The Amazing Impact Of Painting A Roof White

During summer heat air conditioners are used extensively and this can increased energy consumption can be crippling. Black outs occur in the summer thanks to people cooling their homes and workplaces – but these power issues can be avoided. By simply painting roofs white it can help cool buildings and lower energy bills. Painting multiple roofs white can a really positive effect on a large area.

They found that urban expansion alone could increase summer temperatures by up to 6°F in some areas in addition to greenhouse gas-induced warming by 2100. The Mid-Atlantic and Midwest seeing the biggest overall summer temperature increases.

In all areas, white roofs could completely offset the combined increase in temperatures, and if deployed across the entire megapolitan area, could actually reduce summer temperatures compared to the 1990-2010 average.

The benefits of cool roofs were particularly prominent for the urban areas stretching from Washington, D.C. to New York, Chicago and Detroit, and California’s Central Valley.

Cooler summertime temperatures could reduce demand for air conditioning, which could both save money and reduce the chances of electricity grid blackouts.

Read more at Bloomberg.

Manila Uses Paint That Cleans the Air

This is groovy, a paint is being used on the walls of Manila that cleans the air.

In the Philippine capital Manila, which is one of the most polluted cities in the world, a paint which it is claimed can purify the air is being used.

A local company has come up with the paint and in partnership with the government it is trying to use it to clean up one of the city’s most smog-choked roads.

Watch the video at the BBC.

White Paint can Cool Cities

A computer simulation of the urban environment has proven that in theory white paint on rooftops can significantly cool cities – thus saving energy in the summer that would be used for air conditioning.

Cities are particularly vulnerable to climate change because they are warmer than outlying rural areas. Asphalt roads, tar roofs, and other artificial surfaces absorb heat from the Sun, creating an urban heat island effect that can raise temperatures on average by 2-5 degrees Fahrenheit (about 1-3 degrees Celsius) or more compared to rural areas. White roofs would reflect some of that heat back into space and cool temperatures, much as wearing a white shirt on a sunny day can be cooler than wearing a dark shirt.
The study team used a newly developed computer model to simulate the amount of solar radiation that is absorbed or reflected by urban surfaces. The model simulations, which provide scientists with an idealized view of different types of cities around the world, indicate that, if every roof were entirely painted white, the urban heat island effect could be reduced by 33 percent. This would cool the world’s cities by an average of about 0.7 degrees F, with the cooling influence particularly pronounced during the day, especially in summer.

Read the rest of the article.

Green Painting with Milk Paint

You learn something new everyday, and today I learned that you can paint with milk! I found out from this handy green painting guide from National Geographic.

Milk paints are virtually odorless and are made using the milk protein casein and lime. They contain no solvents, preservatives or biocides, though some do have synthetic ingredients like acrylic and vinyl. They come in powdered form and once opened or mixed with water, they should be used quickly, as they can mold if left to stand for a few weeks.

So I did some research on milk paint and found a company that is dedicated to reproducing old fashioned milk paint. From their about us:

In 1974, after much experimentation, we recreated an old Milk Paint formula to provide an authentic finish for our primary business of building reproduction furniture. Since then we have sold our paint to professionals who are either restoring original Colonial or Shaker furniture, making reproductions, or striving for an interior design look that is both authentic and beautiful. Milk Paint is now gaining an even wider usage because it contains only ingredients that are all-natural and will not harm the environment. Our authentic real milk paint is truely a “green paint” that comes in 20 colors.

I also found elsewhere a gallery of milk paint.
milk paint

And here’s a video explaining how to use milk paint:

How have we missed out on milk paint on Things Are Good for so long? Anybody out there now anything more about this painting style?

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