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New green roof policy for the city of Helsinki

New green roof policy for the city of Helsinki

April 5

The City Board of Helsinki adopted on December 19th , 2016 its first comprehensive policy on green roofs. The initiative for establishing a green roof policy was originally made in 2013 by three city councilors: Emma Kari, Mari Puoskari and Anni Sinnemäki. Upon publishing the new policy The City Board stated, “The City of Helsinki is committed to the promotion of green roofs according to the means presented in the green roof policy.”


The stated goals of the policy are improved storm water management, mitigation of urban heat island effect, promoting urban biodiversity and more active utilization of roof surfaces as an urban resource. Strategies aimed to achieve Helsinki’s green roof goals include:

  • Active promotion of green roofs via integration in city planning, pilots and allocations
  • Requirement to demonstrate the consideration of green roofs for all new projects with roof slopes less than 20 degrees
  • A dynamic approach to requirements for substrate depth, based on functional requirements
  • Active promotion of environmentally responsible green roof solutions
  • Commitment to increasing local and municipal expertise through monitoring, evaluation and dissemination of knowledge

The City of Helsinki is also committed to further exploration of methods for developing financial instruments which can stimulate the construction of green roofs. The Helsinki Public Works Department has been tasked with responsibility for implementing the strategy.

The entire policy, translated to English, can be downloaded here at the Scandinavian Green Roof Association web site.

Results from the ROBÆR Project in Western Norway

Results from the ROBÆR Project in Western Norway

February 8

The project “Robust and sustainable communities; ROBÆR” is led by Stavanger Municipality in cooperation with the municipalities of Bergen, Randaberg, Sola and Sandnes. ExxonMobil, Bergknapp (green roof supplier) and The Skjæveland Group are sponsors contributing significant resources to the project. The project is led by Arne Sæbø of The Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research (NIBIO). The goal of the project is to develop blue-green solutions as tools for comprehensive and sustainable stormwater treatment in both the present and future climate conditions of Western Norway.

SGRA board member Tobias Emilsson is commissioned by the project to give expert inputs.

The ROBÆR project held a seminar September 16th, 2016 presenting project themes and results. Presentations from the seminar can be downloaded from the NIBIO net site here.

A status report from the project can be downloaded in English or Norwegian.

"Fifth Dimension" recieves the Green Year award!

January 26

The Finnish Association of Landscape Industries, Viherympäristöliitto ry (VYL) rewarded the Fifth Dimension research programme with the award of the Green Year. The reason for this acknowledgement is that the researchers of the group, led by Dr. Susanna Lehvävirta, have produced new knowledge on vegetation, fertilisation, economy and social aspects of green roofs. The research of the group generates information that can be rapidly and efficiently applied in practice.

Read about the Green Year awards (in Finnish).