Industry Leaders Unite to Create Green Roof Code


Industry professionals have come together to compile a protocol that lays down best practice for the design and installation of green roof systems.

The GRO (Green Roof Organisation) Code was released this week and is the result of unpaid technical co-operation across the UK green roof industry. It aims to guide behaviour on all aspects of the process including design, specification, installation and maintenance.

“This document has been a long time in development which I anticipate will quickly become an essential reference tool for both the specifier and contractor” commented Nick Ridout, green roof product manager for roofing specialist Bauder.

“Although the specification and installation of green roof systems is becoming the norm within the UK, there is a need to establish minimum acceptable standards, as well as a Code of Practice. The GRO Green Roof Code ensures that everyone involved is working on a level playing field. It will also give assurance to the client that the green roof system they are investing in will, not only provide the environmental benefits expected, but will also retain its integrity over the lifetime of the roof.”

The code has been developed in partnership with experts including, the Environment Agency and Homes and Communities Agency; manufacturer Bauder, as well as other suppliers and horticultural consultants. The process was led by The Green Roof Centre at the University of Sheffield working through Groundwork Sheffield, who secured the €457,206 of European LIFE+ funding to enable the development of the document.

Jeff Sorrill, Green Roof Centre, University of Sheffield commented: “Green roofs perform a vital role in helping cities adapt to the effects of climate change. However, they can only provide these environmental benefits if designed and installed in a way that ensures that minimum performance criteria are met. The GRO Code provides the guidelines and references to relevant standards that can be followed to achieve the requisite quality of green roof design, installation and maintenance.”

The Green Roof Organisation as a body is facilitated by the National Federation of Roofing Contractors and now the GRO Code has been issued, it is intended that all members will adhere to the guidelines to ensure the delivery of best practice. On an annual basis, the GRO Code will be reviewed and updated.