Global Cool Cities Alliance (GCCA)


Name of initiative Global Cool Cities Alliance (GCCA)
LPAA initiative No
NAZCA Initiative No
Website address and
Related initiatives
Starting year 2010
End year
Secretariat Kurt Shickman at (202-550-5852).
Organisational structure GCCA is a non-profit organization based in the United States focused on helping communities, cities, and countries to address the challenges of excess heat in urban and rural settings. GCCA connects city leaders and program implementers with peers and with the expert communities across the various facets of the urban heat challenge (building science, climate science, health, socio-cultural studies, economics etc.) GCCA is partnered with C40 to lead the Cool Cities Network, a collection of nearly 20 large cities focused on reducing urban heat.
Geographical coverage Global
Name of lead organisation Global Cool Cities Alliance (GCCA)
Type of lead organisation NGO/Civil Society
Location/Nationality of lead organisation United States of America


Description Global Cool Cities Alliance (GCCA) launched in 2010 to accelerate a world-wide transition to cooler, healthier cities. Its mission is to advance urban heat island mitigation policies and programs to promote more efficient and comfortable buildings, healthier and more resilient cities, and to cancel some of the warming effects of climate change through global cooling. Increasing the solar reflectance of urban surfaces such as roofs and roads is a cost-effective strategy to achieve these goals and enhances the impact of other adaptation strategies such as urban greening.
Objectives A global transition to a built environment that fully utilizes urban surfaces to improve lives, economies, and response to climate through the adoption of highly reflective and vegetated urban surfaces.
Activities Cultivate Partners: Partner with cities, regions, national governments, networks, and companies across the globe to pursue cool roofs and pavements programs. Support these efforts by making it easy to replicate best practices, find expert partners, and share experiences with peers. GCCA currently partners with C40, Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN), National League of Cities (NLC), the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and the World Resources Institute. GCCA was previously the lead for the Clean Energy Ministerial Global Superior Energy Performance Partnership (GSEP) working group for Cool Roofs and Pavements, which included participation from the national governments and private sectors of India, Japan, Mexico, South Africa, and the United States.

Build Tools for Implementers: Grow GCCA’s Cool Roofs and Pavements Toolkit to ensure research about urban heat islands is widely disseminated. The Toolkit is a collaborative network that shares best practices, case studies, and research.

Promote Building Codes and Specifications: Develop product testing and rating procedures to support the inclusion of highly reflective building surfaces into codes, regulations, and laws. Incorporate cool surfaces into the building, energy, and green codes of key US states and major foreign countries.

Advance Research: Support new research to further understand the impacts of cool surfaces on energy use, response to global climate change, urban resiliency, health, and other topic areas.

Spur Market Development: Promote supportive market conditions to spur the installation of cool surfaces in the US and other countries, by supporting testing and rating infrastructure, facilitating relationships, training, material availability and more. GCCA is currently a member of the Advisory Board for Cooling for All -- an initiative of Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) and the Kigali Cooling Efficiency Program (K-CEP) designed to enhance access to thermal comfort (via passive and mechanical cooling strategies). GCCA has helped grow market demand and product supply for cool surfaces in South Africa and Mexico, leading to job creation in urban and rural areas .

One or two success stories achieved

Monitoring and Impacts

Function of initiative Technical dialogue, Capacity building, Political dialogue, Implementation
Activity of initiative Knowledge dissemination and exchange, Training and education, Awareness raising and outreach, Advocacy, Policy planning and recommendations, Goal setting (ex-ante), Knowledge production and innovation
Goals Promote highly reflective urban surfaces and buildings (rural and urban)

GCCA works with stakeholders and partners to develop locally relevant action plans that:

1. Raise awareness amongst the public, industry, academic, and government communities 2. Model regional/national impact of adopting reflective surfaces for residential, institutional, and commercial buildings in terms of energy savings, carbon reductions, and economic impact. 3. Demonstrate efficacy of reflective surfaces with pilot projects in relevant contexts (commercial/institutional, residential, low-income/informal). Integrate with job training and development. 3. Develop the product testing and rating processes and infrastructure (testing procedures, labs etc) needed for high-performing markets. 4. Promote adoption of supportive policies including government procurement, voluntary standards, incentives, and codes/regulations/laws.

Comments on indicators and goals
How will goals be achieved
Have you changed or strenghtened your goals
Progress towards the goals Adding 100 m2 of new reflective surface cancels the warming effect of 0.5 tons of CO2 per year. Global implementation of reflective surfaces would cancel the warming effect of GHGs already in the atmosphere that are equivalent to removing half the world's cars from the roads for 20 years.
How are you tracking progress of your initiative
Available reporting


Participants Number Names
Members 21  
Companies 5 GAF (USA),3M (USA),Sika (USA),Duro-Last (USA),Flex (USA).
Business organisations 1 Chemical Fabrics and Film Association - CFFA (USA)
Research and educational organisations 1 Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (USA)
Non-governmental organisations 14 World Resources Institute (USA),  Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USA),  National League of Cities (USA),  US Green Building Council (USA),  The Energy Foundation (USA),  C40 (USA),  Clean Energy Solutions Center (USA),  R20 (USA),  The Blum Center for Developing Economies (USA),  The Liberty Hill Foundation (USA),  The JPB Foundation (USA),  The Mertz Gilmore Foundation (USA),  Sika Sarnafil (Switzerland),  Duro-Last (USA)
National states 0
Governmental actors 0
Regional / state / county actors 0
City / municipal actors 0
Intergovernmental organisations 0
Financial Institutions 0
Faith based organisations 0
Other members 0
Supporting partners 0
Number of members in the years
Have only national states as participators No


Transport Agriculture Forestry Business Financial institutions Buildings Industry Waste Cities and subnational governments Short Term Pollutants International maritime transport Energy Supply Fluorinated gases Energy efficiency Renewable energy Supply chain emission reductions Adaptation Other Resilience Innovation Energy Access and Efficiency Private Finance
No No No No No Yes No No Yes No No No No Yes No No Yes No Yes No Yes No
Last update: 30 July 2020 13:38:55

Not only have national states as participators