Energy Savings in Green Roofs

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Green roofs offer ample energy savings, as the extra layer of soil and plant material absorbs moisture to prevent roof damage, keeps the building cooler and adds moisture to the air for a healthier environment. Discover the unmistakable benefits of green roofs with information from the executive director of the Institute for Sustainable Practice in this free video on green energy.

Part of the Video Series: Green Energy
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Video Transcript

You wouldn't expect a green roof to be energy efficient but it is. It's basically like the extra lining or extra insulation that you would put in a winter coat or a in extra layers of clothing as you prepare to go outside on a cold winter day. The more material that can be put on a roof such as soil and plant material and membranes to protect the roof from water damage, the thicker those materials are the more insulating effect it can have. As a matter of fact one of the first green roofs in this nation was put on the roof of the city hall in the city of Chicago by Mayor Daly, Mayor Richard Daly. Their energy savings were quite significant after that green roof was installed. A common issue that a lot of people take for granted also is that many of our heating and cooling units are located on roof tops hidden by some type of lip of the building at a higher elevation. But they sit there often on the hottest part of the building. And the green roofs, when located near these devices and these appliances of buildings, create cooler temperatures by which this machinery can operate which cuts down on wear and tear, it increases the efficiency of the units so that they're not operating in such dramatically hot or cold conditions. And it also creates the opportunity for water vapor to be evaportransferated, to be breathed by the plants and evaporated off the leaves of the plants which adds moisture to the air which also cools the heat out of the effect of cities where lots of concrete, lots of black roof tops that absorb the heat, can actually increase temperatures anywhere from five to ten degrees in a large city, much hotter, much warmer than the surrounding countryside. So green roofs have lots advantage for energy and it can also soak up lots of water and create a healthier more prosperous world.

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