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Raising The Roof

Green Roof



They're are a fairly down-to-earth group of people, the folks from the American Society of Landscape Architects that is. But these days they are raising the roof.

Both literally - and figuratively.

They're currently celebrating the success of the green roof they installed on their downtown Washington, D.C., headquarters.

Dedicated in 2006, it featured a variety of plants along with monitoring equipment for comparing its performance with a conventional roof-top next door.

In a single year since then, it's prevented more than 27,000 gallons of rainwater from entering the city's over-stressed storm and sewer systems. And, the 9,000 gallons that was released contained fewer pollutants than typical run-off.

The Society's green roof also reduced the building's heat footprint by reducing overhead temperature as much as thirty-two degrees in the summer. The added insulation also lowered energy use on the inside by up to ten percent in the winter

According to the organization's CEO, Nancy Somerville, the findings show that the group's green roof delivered "significant economic and environmental benefits."

And with a group of highly regarded landscape professionals leading the charge, who knows?

Maybe these green roofs'll start sprouting up all over.

Script by Stephen Webb
Copyright 2008, Catalina Island Conservancy

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