5 Benefits of Green Roof Usage Explained

Benefits of green roof usage include; energy conservation, job creation, air purification, improved drainage and stormwater management, and durability.

This article discusses the benefits of green roof usage, as follows;







1). Energy Conservation (as one of the Benefits of Green Roof Usage)

Green roofs achieve significant energy conservation in buildings, due to their insulating properties, that reduce energy wastage in the form of heat losses from these buildings.

Compared to conventional roofs that are made from materials like tar and aluminum, green roofs permit far-less energy loss as they are not conductive, and tend to facilitate temperature regulation [4]. They are also a good remedy to urban heat island effect as components of green buildings; as they do not absorb any notable amount of heat.

Several efforts have been made to estimate the energy conservation-capacity of green roofs in specific terms. One of such efforts resulted in values of 1.0%; 6.0% and 0.5% respectively for total energy savings, cooling and heating optimization per annum [1].

In addition to conserving energy, green roofs can also increase the comfort of buildings for their inhabitants.

Combining green roofs with renewable energy systems like solar panels and wind turbines can further improve the energy sustainability of a building.





2). Job Creation

While it may not be an obvious benefit, green roof development leads to job creation.

It can be argued that the potential of the green roof market for job creation may be significant, especially since the market is relatively immature, and branches out to several other sectors of construction, energy management and horticulture.

Careers for which jobs are being created in the green roofing sector include technicians, sales representatives, horticulturists, equipment operators and architects.

Benefits of Green Roof Usage: Job Creation (Credit: Cocreatr 2011 .CC BY-SA 2.0.)
Benefits of Green Roof Usage: Job Creation (Credit: Cocreatr 2011 .CC BY-SA 2.0.)





3). Air Purification (as one of the Benefits of Green Roof Usage)

In addition to regulating temperature, green roofs also perform passive air filtration.

Studies have shown that airborne particulate matter can be trapped in significant amount by green roofs [5], so that air quality within the surrounding is improved.

Aside trapping particulates; green roofs also reduce greenhouse gas atmospheric concentration in their surroundings through the role of vegetation as a natural carbon sink [3].

Carbon sequestration by green roofs can occur as the plants in such roofs carry out photosynthesis. Some toxins that cause air pollution can also be absorbed by these plants during their metabolism.

This means that green roofs can be considered instrumental in climate change mitigation. They may also help reduce the risk of health problems caused by air pollution.





4). Improved Drainage and Stormwater Management

Green roofs can function effectively as low environmental impact-drainage tools for stormwater management in urban areas.

While they are not a core component of drainage systems, green roofs can reduce the load on drainage systems by decreasing the volume of stormwater that flows into these systems [2].

The plant component of green roofs can absorb water effectively, which is used to aid further plant growth. Through this mechanism, both water conservation and drainage optimization can be achieved simultaneously.

The quality of stormwater that enters drainage systems in urbanized areas may also be improved by green roofs, which may act as a filter for such runoff. This means that the risk and severity of stormwater pollution can be mitigated.





5). Durability (as one of the Benefits of Green Roof Usage)

Estimates of the lifespan of green roods arrive at figures between 20 and 50 years.

While this may be lower in practical scenarios, the durability of green roofs is aided by their design, which is more sustainable than that of conventional roofs.

Especially when they are well-engineered to suit prevalent conditions in their surroundings, green roofs can be very durable. This is a major advantage when combined with their energy efficiency and water conservation attributes.

Benefits of Green Roof Usage: Durability (Credit: Sky Garden Ltd 2010 .CC BY-SA 4.0.)
Benefits of Green Roof Usage: Durability (Credit: Sky Garden Ltd 2010 .CC BY-SA 4.0.)







Benefits of green roof usage are;

1. Energy Conservation

2. Job Creation

3. Air Purification

4. Improved Drainage and Stormwater Management

5. Durability







1). Castleton, H. F.; Stovin, V.; Beck, S. B. M.; Davison, J. B. (2010). “Green roofs; Building energy savings and the potential for retrofit.” Energy and Buildings 42(10):1582-1591. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.enbuild.2010.05.004. (Accessed 18 December 2022).

2). Kolasa-Wiecek, A.; Suszanowicz, D. (2021). “The green roofs for reduction in the load on rainwater drainage in highly urbanised areas.” Environmental Science and Pollution Research 28(6). Available at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-021-12616-3. (Accessed 18 December 2022).

3). Shafique, M.; Xue, X.; Luo, X. (2019). “An overview of carbon sequestration of green roofs in urban areas.” Urban Forestry & Urban Greening 47(3):126515. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ufug.2019.126515. (Accessed 23 December 2022).

4). Theodosiou, T. (2009). “Green Roofs in Buildings: Thermal and Environmental Behaviour.” Advances in Building Energy Research 3(1):271-288. Available at: https://doi.org/10.3763/aber.2009.0311. (Accessed 23 December 2022).

5). Viecco, M.; Jorquera, H.; Sharma, A.; Bustamante, W.; Fernando, H. J. S.; Vera, S. (2021). “Green roofs and green walls layouts for improved urban air quality by mitigating particulate matter.” Building and Environment 204:108120. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.buildenv.2021.108120. (Accessed 23 December 2022).

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