Green roofs can provide many social, economic, environmental and sustainable benefits for the inhabitants of NYC, including stormwater management, heat island mitigation, thermal regulation habitat enhancement, and recreational opportunities.

Improving Air Quality

Green roof technology can cut carbon and reduce air pollutants such as nitrous oxide, sulfur dioxide, and ozone. In addition, green roofs remove harmful fine particulate matter in the surrounding air.

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Extending Roof Longevity

By protecting roof structures from weathering and degradation, green roofs decrease the cost of repairs and maintenance. Green roofs last up to twice as long as conventional roofs.

Increasing Property Value

Residential and commercial properties with green roofs have higher property values, lower tenant turnover, and lower energy costs. These advantages mitigate the initial high cost of green roof installation.

Increasing Energy Efficiency

Because of their insulating effect, green roofs can increase energy efficiency by reducing energy costs year-round and prolong the life of heating, ventilation, and HVAC systems. Calculate green roof energy savings here and learn how to make your building more energy-efficient.

By providing outdoor space where people can socialize, garden, play, and relax, green roofs, like parks, may improve overall health and well-being. Green roofs are an important source of green space in dense cities. In addition, research has found that office workers are 2.9% more productive when the view out of their office windows includes vegetation.


Lowering Temperatures

Green roofs can insulate buildings, making them cooler in summer and warmer in winter. An increase of green area decreases ambient air temperature and helps mitigate the urban heat island effect.

Retaining Stormwater

Green roofs can retain more than half of annual precipitation, with performance dependent on the local microclimate, precipitation characteristics, growing media depth, and vegetation type. Stormwater retained by green roofs reduces the volume of runoff discharged to separate or combined sewer systems, helping to keep our waterways clean.

Providing Habitat and Increasing Urban Biodiversity

Amid urban infrastructure, green roofs provide much-needed habitats on otherwise unutilized space. They act as connectors for many species, including birds, bees, bats, and insects, to move from one urban green space to another.

Reducing Noise

Green roofs can reduce internal and external sounds by nearly 40 decibels. The soil substrate and plants absorb sound, unlike a conventional roof that simply reflects it.

Additional Resources

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The Green Roof Researchers Alliance is funded by The New York Community Trust, A.P.J. O’Connor Fund, and the LuEsther T. Mertz Fund