New York's roofs may get a lot greener soon

Measuring 6.75 acres, the expansive green roof capping the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in Manhattan is the second largest of its kind in the United States. Image: Javits Center/

In their publication Urban Omnibus , The Architectural League of New York asked experts from the Green Roof Researchers Alliance to elaborate on the implications of NYC's ambitious decarbonization legislation, the Climate Mobilization Act , which --- since November 2019 --- requires all new buildings and major roof alterations to feature either a green roof, solar panels, or a combined solution.

"Green roofs are so important for New York City in the changing climate," explains Danielle Spiegel-Feld, an urban environmental law and sustainable energy policy researcher and professor at New York University School of Law, in the interview. "They're so important for stormwater mitigation. They're so important for water management, which becomes increasingly crucial as rain flows become heavier in the summer. They're so important for the urban heat island effect. They're a critical part of our adaptation strategy, so we need to be serious about the policy."

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