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Missouri University of Science and Technology (2015)

Comprehensive benefits of green roofs

Gibler, Madison R.

Titre : Comprehensive benefits of green roofs

Auteur : Gibler, Madison R.

Université de soutenance : Missouri University of Science and Technology

Grade : M.S. in Environmental Engineering 2015

Green infrastructure uses vegetation, soils, and natural processes to manage water and create healthier urban environments, providing traditional roof services and alternative stormwater management technologies. Other benefits and impacts are not yet fully understood or valued. Research conducted assesses specific stormwater benefits of green roofs, providing information on nutrient leaching from media ; and analyzes potential energy benefits through side-by-side comparisons of full-scale white, traditional black rubber, and green roofs in the mid-continent Missouri climate. Roofing media selection impacted leaching of nutrients, suspended solids, and organic carbon from the tested green roof media. Thermal properties were investigated at the building level, as were benefits related to urban heat island effects. Water and energy models are combined to illustrate impacts of evapotranspiration (ET) on green roof temperatures and urban heat dissipation. As ET is dependent on a variety of climate parameters including temperature, humidity, wind speed, and solar radiation, the potential to dissipate energy from a roof surface by means of water vaporization was modeled. Models using climate data to estimate potential ET may be used as predictive tools on impacts of green roof design and can be applied in stormwater management, allowing green roofs to reach maximum benefits of reduced nutrient loading, decreased runoff, peak flow attenuation, urban heat island mitigation, and economic savings. Findings also raise questions as many ancillary benefits such as aesthetics, stormwater management, and urban energy dissipation are society-level benefits, yet capital costs as well as operation and maintenance costs are generally incurred only by the building owner. Economic vehicles could help maximize community benefits and alleviate financial burden on building owner


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