Water Resources Research Act Program

Details for Project ID 2010AL89B

Experimental Investigation of Runoff Mitigation from Vegetated Roofs

Institute: Alabama
Year Established: 2010 Start Date: 2010-03-01 End Date: 2011-02-28
Total Federal Funds: $25,000 Total Non-Federal Funds: $50,828

Principal Investigators: Jason Kirby, Robert Peters

Abstract: Recommendations for green roofs as stormwater mitigants will vary depending on whether the stormwater is captured directly on the green roof surface during a transient rain event, or whether stormwater is both captured directly and excess stormwater stored for subsequent irrigation. Although research has been conducted on the viability and performance of vegetative roofs, the results obtained in those studies are directly transferable to the different climatic conditions of the southeastern United states. In the Southeast, rainfall amounts are gererally higher, low temperatures and snow occur infrequently, and higher average temperatures will be recorded. Therefore, research is needed to determine the effectiveness of green roofs for stormwater mitigation and develop optimal soil matrices incorporated with recycled construction materials for use in the Southeast. Very few studies have been aimed at the varying reduction of stormwater based on plant selection, and particularly in optimizing a green roof based on plant selection. We seek to develop the fundamental basis and practical application for developing green roof technology in the southeastern United States. We will identify and determine plant species and soil matrices that are optimal for developing sustainable vegetative roof systems for the southeastern United States. It is the objective of this research to quantify the stormwater reduction potential of vegetated roofs in the southeastern United States.