Tuesday, August 19, 2008
A greener view from the top - My thesis abstract
Incase you were at all wondering what my thesis was about, or maybe even a little bit interested in green roofs. Feast your eyes on this literary masterpiece, haha
Urban areas continue to expand as more people move into cities; there will be a further increase in environmental problems in these areas. Green roofs are one method to help mitigate some of the environmental problems which arise in urban areas. These problems, such as the urban heat island effect and storm water runoff, can be reduced by installing vegetated roofs. In Halifax, there has been minimal installation of green roofs. Previously installed green roofs in Halifax date back as early as the 1850’s (Citadel Hill National Historic Site), while most were built in the 1970s or in the past decade. The goal of this study was to find and classify the existing green roofs in Halifax, Nova Scotia as well as those roofs planned or under construction. The study took place from May to October 2007. In total, 46 roofs were found in Halifax, and over 50 roofs including the city and other parts of Nova Scotia. Temperature loggers and a hand-held thermometer were used to measure soil, roof surface, and air temperature for green roofs and paired conventional or non-green roofs in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Temperatures were compared between conventional and green roofs. Green roofs showed, on average, a 3.5°C reduction in roof surface temperature compared with the conventional roofs. Temperature loggers were also placed in urban areas of the city as well as the forested countryside to test for an urban heat island effect. While the majority of the results from the urban heat island effect were not statistically significant, a clear increase in air temperature of urban areas compared to rural areas is visible.