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Building Operating Management

Green Roofs Incentives and Rebates

June 2014 - Roofing   Article Use Policy

What incentives or rebates might be available for facility managers interested in installing a green roof? 

There are many types of incentives and rebate programs that vary from city to city. Because green roofs provide so many public benefits public entities are actively developing programs to get the public to install more green roofs. The benefits of green roofs are both direct and indirect in nature. Indirect incentives will vary but include such items as density bonus for zoning, development incentives, fast-track permitting, zoning upgrades, reduced stormwater requirements and they can be used to offset green space allocation requirements.

Direct investment or grants may take the form of rebates & installation financing; grant funding, tax credits or reimbursements to property owners who install specific practices. Other incentives can include low interest loans, energy efficiency incentives and stormwater rebates or fee reductions usually related to the use of impervious surfaces. Be sure to check around with your city officials to see what incentives are available in your area.

However remember that many of the benefits and incentives of green roofs are accrued to owner of the building which includes energy efficiency, increased membrane durability and longevity, increased rental rates for a recreation amenity and marketing appeal. Many builders, developers and owners understand that installing a green roof make good economic sense in the marketplace. The economic case for green roofs is well understood in class A office space and multifamily buildings where few new developments can be competitive without considering a green roof as a marketing asset.

Answers provided by Jeffrey L. Bruce, FASLA, LEED, ASIC, GRP. Bruce is owner of Jeffrey L. Bruce & Company (JBC) a national landscape architectural firm. Founded 1986, JBC provides highly specialized technical support to many of the nation’s leading Architectural and Landscape Architectural firms on a wide variety of project profiles including engineered soils, green roof technologies, urban agronomy, green infrastructure, performance sports turf, water harvesting, and irrigation engineering. Bruce is a Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects, Past President of the American Society of Irrigation Consultants (ASIC), and Chairman of Green Roofs for Healthy Cities (GRHC).


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