Have you heard of World Green Roof Day? If not, you’re missing out!
Towns and cities all over the world are going green to clean up their carbon footprint and adapt to climate change. Not only do green roofs benefit everyone, they benefit small wildlife, and that’s something that we should all be celebrating! This celebration of green roofs is a global thing, and whether you are in business or not, you can still celebrate going green.
Whether it’s a bike shed or a bus stop, the roof of your new extension or your home office, you can still enjoy a beautiful green roof and celebrating it is going to be more than encouraged. Every World Green Roof Day, people the world over are encouraged to look out of their window and check for roofs that are perfect candidates for going green!
What are green roofs?
A green roof is also known as a living roof. It’s a roof space that facilitates shrubs, trees, vegetation and pretty spaces designed to be colourful and aid the environment.
Why should green roofs be celebrated?
We are in a climate emergency, and we can’t get away from that fact. Green roofs are going to be a big part of the solution. Green roofs are not a new concept, but they may be newly received from those who aren’t aware of what it all means for them.
The very first green roof policy came about in 1979 in Germany. Green roofs are particularly popular among those in urban planning in Europe, but the rest of the world needs to catch on – fast – if we are to do something about the current climate crisis.
In the bigger cities in America and the UK, rooftop gardens and greenery are becoming more and more popular, with London leading the charge in green rooftop oasis spaces. There is a great deal of value and environmental benefits in green roofing, and cities across the world should take them up to ensure that they are helping the rest of the world, too.
There are different types of green roof design, from intensive and biodiverse to extensive. Some green roofs are domestic and others commercial, some on flat roofs and others pitched. The chance for amazing design is huge and you can improve air quality, collect and control rainwater runoff and deliver improvements and value to each building. There are huge benefits to having a green roof, so let’s check those out!
Benefits of Green Roofs
Green roofs are very popular in urban areas, so when it comes to World Green Roof Day, it’s important to know the benefits of having a green roof. Let’s dive in!
Replacing Green Spaces
When you live in a city or built-up area, you notice pretty quickly that the rise of high-rises and concrete is rapidly overtaking green spaces. With much of this green space reducing in size and frequency, green roofing has become the next best option. We need vegetation and greenery, trees and better oxygen. With the spaces gone, green roof gardens can replace some of the lost greenery that we rely on. Our birds, insects and other wildlife rely on them, too.
Roof gardens retain rainwater and it’s easier to manage storm water as a result. Urban areas have hard slabs and concrete as the major materials, and as such, rainwater run-off can cause flooding. Without proper management, this water becomes a hazard in urban places. Green roofs can reduce the load and retain that water.
A Peaceful Place
A rooftop garden is one of the best things to come out of urban areas. It’s a place that provides tranquillity and calm and it’s a jewel in the crown of a city. Green roofs provide a great space in which to relax, and they offer the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.
Grass and plants always make a home look better, and a lush garden on top of a roof just makes the house look beautiful. It works for an office building, too, and a green roof works to brighten up an otherwise grey space.
Green roofs can be big or small and they work to improve air quality, cool the urban environment and insulate the buildings. They work to boost the wellbeing of others, too!
History of World Green Roof Day
World Green Roof Day was founded by Chris Bridgman & Dusty Gedge; veterans of the sustainable living roof arena. Each year, they’re devoted to helping World Green Roof Day educate others on the benefits of green roofs to our climate, cities and wellbeing.
The founders are also board members of the Green Roof Organisation, a UK trade body that’s responsible for the green roof code of practice. By celebrating green roofs, there is hope across the globe that we can all come together and enjoy green spaces and all they have to offer.
We need to continue to act to ensure that they are well-maintained, and World Green Roof Day allows you time to celebrate the efforts put in by all and the benefits that green roofs bring us.
Did you know…
- Green roofs can reduce the flow of storm water from a roof by up to 65%.
- Protected from ultraviolet radiation and changes in temperature, green roofs can last two to three times longer than standard roofs.
- 42% of the total market in the UK for green roofs is in London. The more dense the urban environment, the more greenery up top you can expect!
- The Central Activity Zone of London (the fancy word for “heart of the city”) had green roofs covering 290,000m2 as of 2017!
How to celebrate World Green Roof Day
Get your cameras ready and start snapping. Use social media to discuss the green roof you have going on, or your favorite roof-top gardens you’ve seen while out-and-about.
Tell your town pages, your city billboards and your local politicians why you think green roofs are important. If you haven’t seen anyone talk about them in your area, it’s up to you shout it from the proverbial green rooftops!