Assessing the Effectiveness of Extensive Green Roofs at Mitigating Environmental Conditions in Atlanta, Georgia

Sharon Murphy


Green roofs can be an effective mitigation strategy to offset the environmental impact that urbanization has on the environment. The roof area for the city of Atlanta and for the Georgia State University campus was used to compare the effectiveness of green roofs at removing pollutants, abating stormwater runoff, and reducing the urban heat island at different scales. Results show that the warmest part of the city is the urban core, which is also the area of the city with the highest percentage of impermeable surfaces. Green roofs can reduce land surface temperature in the urban core up to 2.62°C, remove up to 73 kg of atmospheric pollutants annually, and reduce stormwater runoff by up to 32.3% annually at the GSU scale. Results were less significant at the Atlanta scale due to the large amount of vegetated surfaces that already exist.