Back to basics: Paint the town white to save power

In a previous post I had described the features of AR Shivakumar’s self-sufficient home in Bangalore built 19 years ago when water shortages were unheard of in the green city. Shivakumar’s house has a green element in every nook and corner, including plants in the balcony and coconut shells converted to garden pots. What surprised me, however, was his terrace.  It does not have even a hint of green and is painted a stark white.

“A white roof brings down the temperature inside the house by at least two degrees,’’ he told me. “In India, our architects are too set on building the next Taj Mahal. They need to get back to the basics.”

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