Time to Mow the Roof

Did you know there is a way to reduce heating and cooling loads on a building? Did you know you can help make your city cooler in the summer? Did you know there is a way to increase your roof's life span, reduce storm water run off, filter CO2 out of the air and have a yard in a high rise apartment?

Of course you did. Because you are so eco smart and knowledgeable. But in case you wanted to learn more about "green roofs" here is a blog post for you.

Green roofs are partially or completely covered rooftops on buildings and are made up of soil & vegetation over a waterproof "membrane." Green roofs started way back with the Vikings, but have become more prevalent in Europe since the '60s. In the US, Green Roofs are being added to urban high rises for all of the benefits I mentioned in the first paragraph, and most importantly, to save money.

Traditional building materials absorb the sun's rays and heat up, contributing at least 12 degrees of additional heat for the city. City officials are taking notice and changing building codes to include green roofs as storm water collection devices and roofing insulation. Chicago led the way in Green Roof development by placing one on top of City Hall. Other cities offer tax incentives to make roofs green.

Green roofs make for great gardens and patios. They attract butterflies, birds, and other wildlife. A study conducted by Environment Canada found a 25% reduction in summer cooling needs thanks to Green Roofs.

If you live in a condo and are a member of the condo board, bring up the possibility of saving everyone energy costs by creating a green roof. If you work in an office building, bring up the idea to your building manager. Call your city's utility office and ask about tax benefits for green roofs. What could be better then sitting on a lawn chair, running your fingers through the grass, sipping a glass of wine, and watching the sun set over your city's horizon?


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