What is a green roof system?
Green Roofs are an increasingly popular design for commercial and industrial buildings as they are an eco-friendly and creative alternative to traditional flat roofing projects. Sage BEC are experienced with Green and Brown Roof Systems and are approved installers for IKO, Alumasc & Bauder.
Also referred to as a Living Roof or Eco-Roof, these systems install a layer of vegetation over a waterproofing membrane on the roof of a building. They are recognised for positively contributing to the issue of declining green spaces in urban environments as they offer a number of ecological and economical benefits. Living roofs are most commonly placed on flat or warm roofs, but they do offer some flexibility.
WHAT TYPES OF LIVING ROOFS ARE THERE?
Intensive Green Roofs are a popular choice for commercial buildings as they provide the opportunity to create a large living space with a variety of different plants and flowers. Intensive designs use planting mediums with a greater depth ( 6+ inches) to accommodate a wide variety of plants, trees and shrubs. Most intensive eco roofs offer the space to incorporate walkways and create a beautiful roof garden. This is a great way to utilise a large commercial or industrial roof. Due to the heavy weight load of an intensive living roof, it requires a complex structural support from a building to maintain it.
Extensive Green Roofs are lighter in comparison and require a thin planting medium (2-6 inches). They are suitable for roofs with shallow to moderate slopes and are constructed with low maintenance plants including grass and sedums. Extensive green roof systems require less maintenance than intensive designs, however an extensive sedum roof will not offer as much insulation or energy saving benefits that come with installing an intensive system.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?
As plants and vegetation are incorporated into the installation of an Eco Roof, they offer a number of benefits to the environment:
Living Roofs can effectively reduce the stress on drainage systems in the event of excessive rain. The plants used can retain water before naturally releasing it back into the atmosphere and delaying water run-off. Typically, it will intercept between 50% and 75% of rainwater, but intensive designs can reduce water runoff by up to 90%.
Eco-Roofs are an effective way to replace green spaces that are lost through building developments. By incorporating plants, flowers and local materials into the design, they help to create a natural habitat for many different insects and animals.
Improving Air Quality
Plants can help improve air quality by absorbing nitrous oxide and other harmful materials.
Commercial green roof systems can act as an insulating layer and reduce energy consumption required to moderate the temperature of a building throughout the winter.
Increase the roof lifespan
Research suggests that a commercial eco roof can significantly increase the lifespan of a building’s roof by protecting the waterproofing membrane from UV light, harsh weather and changing temperatures.
Sage BEC are a carbon neutral company and an advocate of carbon reducing materials within the construction industry. Read about our efforts to improve our environmental impact.