Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Green Roofs in Greece - Why waiting is no longer an option.

The recent Parnitha fire may have, at the very least, made ground for one of my favorite issues to make it on the agenda - but I am still wary about that. As a result of the destruction of Athens greenest area, experts are warning about the environmental implications including flooding, increase in temperatures in the summer and colder winters, as well as increased pollution level

scientists called for restricting the use of private cars in the city, with priority given to public transport, noting that these could raise temperatures in the city by 1 degree Celsius; restriction of construction and the introduction of criteria requiring new buildings to have bioclimatic features; improving older buildings through the use of "green roofs" and light-coloured roofs that might lower temperatures by up to 3 degrees Celsius; the use of cooler materials for road surfaces, pavements and open spaces, since using the wrong materials greatly increased the city's surface temperature and that of the environment; and immediate adoption and implementation of European Union directives on energy efficiency in buildings, whose energy performance in Greece was poor and led to extremely high energy consumption in order for them to be cooled but also to a significant additional heat burden on the environment as a result.