History of modern cultivated Green Roof technology
Modern Green Roof technology began in the 1970s in Germany when the first green roof systems were developed and marketed almost out of necessity. Today, Germany and Holland are considered the leaders in Green Roof development and installation - far in advance of the Green Roof industry in North America. Green Roof technology had to keep a pace with urban development and, in the eighties, the technology shifted to a lighter and less expensive system which could be applied to larger flat roofs as a way to reduce water runoff from the roof's overflowing the storm drains. As villages grew in size, the old storm-water drain system had to be upgraded to accommodate the added water flow from the conventional roofs. For this reason creative scientists turned to nature for help!
Because the Green Roof acts like a sponge it was not only the most practical and affordable way to deal with the peak flow - it was also the most attractive contribution to urban landscape. The Green Roof was the perfect solution because it would retain the excess water thereby preventing flooding of the streets below, and then, only upon saturation, the Green Roof releases the excess in a gradual manner. Just think about the potential for Canadian cities that struggle with flash rainstorms!
The more we learn about Green Roofs - the more we realize they offer a variety of benefits to our urban landscape and to our society as a whole. Modern research is uncovering exciting benefits to this technology. Reduced energy consumption for heating and cooling, heat island mitigation and the filtration of acid rain and air pollutants are just some of the benefits of your next Green Roof.