Green is In

With global warming creeping in, people have made ingenious ways to fight the battle and have slowly gone green. No wonder sustainability, organic, and green have become everyone’s favourite words.

This has gone from food, and now to roofs. To be accurate this concept has been around for 50 years. But it’s just during the past 15 years that this concept is being used more and more.

It’s probably because apart from it being eco-friendly, more and more people have acknowledged the other uses and benefits of having a green roof. To name a few: it gives better insulation, decreases the exposure of waterproofing membranes, reduces the amount of storm water runoff, offers noise reduction and fire retardation and improves air quality. The list goes on and on. So it’s definitely a no-brainer why people are slowly moving into this kind of trend.

Now people may think a garden roof is also a green roof and people may have interchanged these terms once in awhile. The main similarity is that both of these types of roofs have plants on top of them. The difference boils down to its function. A garden roof is mainly recreational, but a green roof is used for heat reduction.

There are 2 main types of green roof which differentiate on the kind of plants used. First the extensive green roof is not meant for human use. It has less ground depth with only 20mm to 150mm, thus its need for only ground crawling planters such as sedum. So generally it has a lighter weight and is cheaper, which explains why it is more widely used than the other. The second type is the intensive green roof which has a minimum depth of 150mm. This allows a wider variety of plants, but in contrast, requires more materials on drainage and support to accommodate it.

No matter which green roof is used, it’s sure to enjoy the benefits that were mentioned above. Many famous landmarks like The Freshwater Place in Australia, Toronto’s City Hall Podium Roof, in Canada, the International School in Lyon, in France and Saint Michael’s Sustainable community in Costa Rica have adapted it. Many countries have already joined the bandwagon, and it will just be a matter of time before the entire world will too.

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