Green Roofs in Commercial Construction

The roof of any building is your first barrier against Mother Nature and with the trend moving towards greener construction, roofing materials have changed too.  Having a green roof can help with the cost of utilities, create  a safe space for plants and animals and contribute to the local environment rather than contributing to local pollution.  Here is how green roofing works and the materials used.

What Does Green Roofing Mean?

Roofs are typically wasted space on commercial buildings but when you have a green roof instead of just empty space the roof is being used as a garden instead.  The roof is built to hold grasses and plants growing in shallow soil covering the roof’s surface.  These plants are meant to grow as naturally as possible and this is not a space meant for recreation.

The Cost of Green Roofing

Installing a green roof is going to cost more than traditional roofing materials and it is going to take more planning.  First of all your building needs to be constructed well enough to support a green roof.  Green roofs are heavier and the surface of the roof will be covered with plants and soil.  Larger roofs even add trees to the other plant life.

Pros and Cons of Green Roofing

Green roofing is meant to help combat climate change particularly in urban areas where there is a lot of CO2 being dumped in the air and very little plant life to absorb it.  What has been traditionally unused space can now be used to help fight climate change.  Green roofs help provide a barrier against bad weather and it can help assist with drainage.  It provides additional insulation allowing your property to be more energy efficient.

The biggest drawback to a green roof is the cost.  Whether you opt to green your entire roof or just a portion of it there will be costs that a traditional roof just doesn’t have.  You are going to need a special architect to design it for you and it won’t be cheap to install.  Until costs come down it will be an expense that many business owners don’t want to pay for.

While green roofs are being hailed as one of many possible actions against climate change the reality is, until the costs drop or the government start offering tax incentives we won’t have as many green roofs as we need in the fight against climate change.