The Future of Green Roofing
Green roofing systems are not a new technology – popular in Europe for centuries and revitalized by Germany in the 1970s, green roofs have a long history. But with concerns over the long-term sustainability of the environment, the green construction movement, and programs like LEED, green roofing might finally become a common feature in cities in the US. In Chicago, city hall already sports a 20,000 square-foot green roof, which has saved the city $25,000 in heating and cooling costs during its first six years. And in Los Angeles, which costs $100 million per year to cool, former Mayor Richard Daley helped turn 2.5 million square feet of roofs green (Colwell).
The future of green roofing seems bright. While green roofing systems haven’t caught on entirely yet (making a residential roof green, for example, is still very pricey), projects like those in Chicago, Los Angeles, and Vancouver, as well as an increasing number of university projects like the one at Duke University, demonstrate tangible financial incentives for change. And in a capitalistic society, where there are tangible financial incentives, change will inevitably come.
Colwell, Dara. “Green Roofs: Building for the Future." AlterNet, 3/6/07.
Duke University Smart Home Program
“Green Roof Growing Atop Convention Centre." British Columbia News, 7/11/08.