Heat island reduction | U.S. Green Building Council
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LEED ND: Plan | v3 - LEED 2009

Heat island reduction

GIBc9 | Possible 1 point


To reduce heat islands to minimize effects on the microclimate and human and wildlife habitat.


Option 1. Nonroof measures

Use any combination of the following strategies for 50% of the nonroof site hardscape (including roads, sidewalks, courtyards, parking lots, parking structures, and driveways):

  1. Provide shade from open structures, such as those supporting solar photovoltaic panels, canopied walkways, and vine pergolas, all with a solar reflectance index (SRI) of at least 29.
  2. Use paving materials with an SRI of at least 29.
  3. Install an open-grid pavement system that is at least 50% pervious.
  4. Provide shade from tree canopy (within ten years of landscape installation).


Option 2. High-reflectance and vegetated roofs

Use roofing materials that have an SRI equal to or greater than the values in Table 1 for a minimum of 75% of the roof area of all new buildings within the project; or install a vegetated (“green”) roof for at least 50% of the roof area of all new buildings within the project. Combinations of SRI-compliant and vegetated roofs can be used provided they satisfy the equation in Option 3.

Table 1. Minimum solar reflectance index value, by roof slope

Roof slope SRI
Low (≤ 2:12) 78
Steep (> 2:12) 29


Option 3. Mixed nonroof and roof measures

Use any of the strategies listed under Options 1 and 2 that in combination meet the following criterion:

Area of Nonroof Measures
+ Area of SRI Roof
+ Area of Vegetated Roof
Total Site Hardscape Area + Total Roof Area

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