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Striving to be world's first carbon neutral capital, Copenhagen enacts mandatory green roof policy

In an attempt to be the world's first carbon-neutral capital, Copenhagen, Denmark will enact a new policy mandating green roofs.
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Written by Andrew Nusca, Contributor on

In an attempt to be the world's first carbon-neutral capital, Copenhagen, Denmark will reportedly enact a new policy mandating green roofs.

The new policy requires building plans to incorporate vegetation and soil and applies to all buildings with roofs that are at less than a 30-degree pitch.

It also applies to older roofs, which must be retrofitted. (Such projects will receive financial assistance from public funding.)

LivingRoofs.org quotes Bo Asmus Kjeldgaard, Copenhagen's mayor of technical and environmental administration, in a May 17, 2010 announcement from the city:

Copenhagen has set itself the ambitious target of becoming the world's first carbon neutral capital by 2025. To meet this ambitious goal we need ambitious measures. Therefore we have now decided to ensure the City adapts to extreme weather conditions by making new requirements for getting grass on top of as many buildings as possible.

The advantages of green roofs are many:

  • They absorb 50 to 80 percent of the precipitation that falls on them.
  • They provide a cooling and insulating effect of the building and reduce reflection.
  • They help reduce the urban heat island effect.
  • They increase the life of a roof by protecting it against ultraviolet rays.
  • They visually "green" a city.

According to LivingRoofs, at least 30 buildings in Copenhagen today have green roofs.

Photo: Visit Copenhagen

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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