Mexico City Plants Green Roofs
It’s common to see smog settling over Mexico City. But soon it’ll also be common to see green roofs dotting the landscape. The city is starting on the plan to suck up some of the pollution and cut energy use. The green roofs would also help lower the city’s temperature and reduce flash flooding because of the roofs’ ability to capture water.
The proposed 500,000 square feet of green roofs are part of Mayor Marcelo Ebrard’s $5.5 billion Green Plan, which also plans to reduce traffic in the crowded city. Although the plan would begin with mostly government buildings, a green roof has already been installed on a daycare, and the children there take time off to play on the grass.
However, green roofs are expensive, and the mayor is proposing a lot. According to the EPA, “Currently, the up-front cost of an extensive green roof in the U.S. starts at about $8 per square foot, which includes materials, preparation work, and installation. In comparison, the cost of a traditional built-up roof starts at about $1.25.”
Multiply that by the 500,000 square feet, and you got a big chunk of that money going towards greening the city. Which brings up an interesting point: does our own government subsidize green technology enough? What technologies need improvements?
On a side note, Chicago is the leader in green roofs in North America but still trails behind Europe.
Photo Credit: 416style at Flickr under a Creative Commons License