BELOIT, WI, August 14, 2001 - It's mid-August and energy costs seem to be mirroring the temperature - going up with little relief in sight. For building owners and operators, keeping their buildings cool and their costs down calls for creative thinking, which is where the innovative GreenGrid™ System, an energy saving roof technology introduced by Roy F. Weston, Inc. (WESTON®) and ABC Supply Co., Inc. (ABC Supply), enters into the picture.
The GreenGrid™ System allows a building's roof to be transformed from a barren space that is an energy liability into a rooftop oasis of plants and grasses that acts as an extra level of insulation. At the same time, the system also provides an added benefit of controlling stormwater runoff, which is a major source of water pollution.
While many of us may not have ventured onto an office rooftop during the day, it can get exceedingly hot up there. For example, when the outside air temperature reaches 95° F, rooftop surface temperatures can be as high as 175° F. These high outdoor temperatures impact not only the temperature within the building, but also the amount of energy necessary to cool the building to the desired temperature. By contrast, a GreenGrid™ roof rarely will get hotter than 77° F. This reduced rooftop temperature means cooling costs can be lowered by up to 50 percent.
"The GreenGrid™ System is designed to help building owners and managers extend the life of the roofing system, manage skyrocketing heating and air conditioning costs and provide a new functionality for your property's unused space," said GreenGrid™ designer Don Mischo, of roofing supply giant ABC Supply.
The idea of using a green roof system is not new - it has been used in Europe for 30 years. However, unlike the European systems, which are generally both complicated and costly, the GreenGrid™ System developers point out that theirs is a rooftop technology that is simple in design and cost competitive. The GreenGrid™ modular system, made of recycled materials, can be installed without the need of specialized equipment and depending on the size of the roof, can be completed in a few days to a few weeks.
"Green roofs offer a near term solution to maximize building efficiency while reducing urban air temperatures and pollution. We applaud the efforts of this team to produce a flexible green roof product that can make our cities more livable," said Christine Ervin, CEO of the US Green Building Council, the nation's foremost coalition of industry leaders who promote environmentally responsible buildings.
"Building owners and managers will appreciate the GreenGrid™ System's lightweight, modular design that arrives at the worksite planted and ready for installation," said Kenneth Hendricks, ABC Supply's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
Widespread use of such a system would bring enormous benefits, as a recent study by WESTON has shown. According to the study, greening the rooftops of all city buildings in Chicago would result in annual energy savings of nearly $100 million. This translates into a reduction in peak electricity demand of 720 megawatts, or the equivalent of several coal-fired units. Green roofs also increase the life of a roof membrane, provide usable space for recreation, increase property values and retain significant rainfall, thereby reducing stormwater runoff.
"This is an entirely new concept in green roof technology," said William Robertson, WESTON Chief Executive Officer. "We believe the simplicity of design and the economic benefits to our clients will have a major impact on the entire commercial roofing industry. This technology will also impact government policy and initiatives to reduce urban heat island effects."
WESTON (http://www.rfweston.com) provides infrastructure redevelopment services worldwide. With an emphasis on creating lasting economic solutions for its clients, the company’s services include site remediation and redevelopment, infrastructure operations and knowledge management to bring impaired facilities, land, and other resources back to productive use.
About ABC Supply
ABC Supply (http://www.abcsupply.com) is the largest U.S. wholesale distributor of roofing and siding materials, tools, and supplies. Founded in 1982, ABC Supply currently has more than 200 locations in 43 states. Specializing in select product lines, it offers the professional contractor (large or small) competitive pricing, superior pick-up and delivery service, and the highest quality building materials available.
For more information and photos of the GreenGrid™ System, visit http://www.greengridroofs.com.