Green Roofs: The Sustainable Future for Urban Infrastructure

From the skyscrapers of Singapore to the high-rise office blocks of Manhattan, green roofs are redefining skylines across the world. However, these blooming spaces are taking off throughout the UK, with the government’s London Plan setting an ambitious target for 50% of the city to be green by 2050. With the uptake of these eco-friendly roofs on the rise, we’re already seeing an annual increase of 17% across the UK as a whole.

Meeting green targets will require a holistic effort across all strands of society; from public office and commercial sectors right through to the personal responsibilities of the individual household. This means investing heavily in green spaces throughout urban areas, as well as encouraging a cleaner approach to manufacturing, production, and you guessed it: roofing.

Towards a Greener Urban Skyline 

In a world where climate action is imperative, how can roofing play its role? As roofing moves towards a greener, more sustainable future, we’ve identified a number of areas where eco roofing can drive positive and lasting change.

Sustainable Drainage:

Flooding is causing catastrophic damage to towns and cities across the globe. Green roof space offers a sustainable drainage system, with vegetation acting as a permeable surface that stores and uses rainwater to its advantage. This in turn prolongs the surface runoff period; reducing the risk of flooding and promoting environmentally intelligent urban spaces. 

Combat Urban Heat Island Effect:

As buildings store heat energy that’s absorbed throughout the day, they tend to radiate this heat back into the air, causing cities to be much  warmer than rural areas during nighttime hours. This not only contributes to pollution, but puts a strain on energy resources when people are reaching for fans and air conditioning to cool down. The urban heat island effect is often cited as a contributing factor to global warming, but green roofing offers a solution to mitigate such damage. Evaporation from soil and leaves on eco-roofs encourages a cooling effect on urban air. Not only this, but the multi-layered green roof system also prevents solar radiation and heat loss in buildings. These factors combined result in reduced temperatures and an overall reversal in the urban heat island effect.

Cleaner Air:

Through the creation of more biodiverse environments, green roofs contribute to improved air quality and reduced levels of pollution. It’s pretty simple, more plants means more photosynthesis, so as plants absorb carbon dioxide from the air, they release oxygen and generate cleaner air for us to breathe in. 

Longer-lasting Roof Membranes:

Weather is the number one cause of damaged and worn out roofing membranes. UV radiation and extreme temperature exposure results in accelerated aging of any membrane. But green roofs solve this problem by acting as a protective barrier against weather, temperature and UV light. As the vegetative layer acts as a buffer to the membrane, it’s protected against extreme temperatures and has a longer lifespan than your average membrane.

Green Roofing: QDEK’s Adhesive Solution

Here at QDEK, we’ve pioneered research & development to present green roofing with an adhesive solution that works. QDEK 2000 is a groundbreaking adhesive that can be applied to a versatile range of roofing environments, including green roofs. 

  • Moisture & Weather Resistant: Green roofs typically exist in moist environments, susceptible to natural dew and water saturation as a result of rainfall and humidity. QDEK 2000 offers optimum support for such circumstances, with inbuilt resistance to elevated temperature exposure protecting green skylines in all seasons.
  • Suitable for large area work: Applying green roofs to large spaces requires an adhesive that’s up to the job. Fortunately, QDEK 2000 has been formulated for this purpose, facilitating large green roofing areas across the largest of spaces. 
  • Fast drying formula: Creating green skylines shouldn’t come at the cost of lengthy production times or tedious drying periods. With this in mind, QDEK 2000 has been engineered to boast a fast-drying formula, with 80% of its final strength achieved in 24 hours. 

Go Green with QDEK

If you’re a waterproofing membrane manufacturer looking for a green solution, we’ve got the right adhesive for you. From membrane compatibility and flash-off times, to green strength and temperature resistance – our trusted advisors will determine the right formula to guarantee success for your business. To find out more, reach out to QDEK category manager Leigh McKenzie via or contact us here.