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Green Rooftops: Harnessing Nature for Sustainable Living

2023-08-07
Nyelv:English
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As urbanization continues to expand around the world the warmer climates of crowded metropolitan areas – known as “heat island effect” – are becoming an increasingly pressing problem. To address this issue, new developments and architectural designs featuring gardens, trees, and even urban rooftop farms are emerging. These innovative approaches offer many benefits for both the environment and society.

In 2020, Canada's Lufa Farms launched the world's largest commercial rooftop greenhouse. This urban farm facility was established on the rooftop of a warehouse in Montreal, Canada. With a combined area of 150,000 square meters, equivalent to the size of three football fields, Lufa Farms uses hydroponic systems to cultivate approximately 100 types of vegetables and herbs, providing sustainable food for city residents.

In 2020, it was announced that the Thammasat University Rooftop Farm (TURF) had been established at Thailand's Thammasat University, Rangsit Campus, making it Asia’s largest urban rooftop organic farm. The innovative project incorporates a number of sustainable elements, such as solar energy systems, organic waste management, and efficient water use. In addition to its agricultural benefits, TURF serves as a platform for mitigating flood risks within the campus. It also acts as an educational hub for teaching urban farming, offers social benefits, and fosters interdisciplinary collaboration among various disciplines in the university community.

In 2021, an inspiring event occurred when 31 major European cities signed a declaration committing to greening 30-40% of high-rise buildings within their metropolitan areas. The mayors of these cities unanimously agreed to invest in tree-planting initiatives, particularly in parks and other available spaces, in order to enhance water absorption and prevent flooding. Also, in 2021, the city planning authority of Basel, Switzerland, made green roofs a legal requirement. By making the installation of green roofs compulsory, Basel became the world’s first city to have green spaces among buildings and metropolitan areas enforced by law.

In 2023, plans were announced for an exciting urban farm on top of a multi-story car park in Birmingham, England. Kate Smith says, “Our proposal is part of a system rethink designed to provide food security as we cope with a changing world.”

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