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Within the framework of a thesis at the Technical University Anhalt (FH) in Bernburg (D), the author studied the profitability of green roofs of ZinCo GmbH in Unterensingen. Under the supervision of Prof. Dipl. Ing. Rainer K. Schöffel and Dipl. Ing. (FH) Axel Heinrich, it was proven that rooftop greening can bear up against even a microeconomic examination. The study was divided into two parts.  In the theoretical part, an analysis of the manifold effects of green roofs under economic aspects was carried out. Based on these results, a second part followed, which studied the profitability of 24 objects with extensive green roofs. The numerous positive qualities and effects of green roofs are well known. Still, ecological grounds alone may not suffice to convince many people, especially at a time when the slogan “Miserliness is cool” affects everyday life. For this reason, the emphasis of the thesis was placed on quantifying the economic advantages that a building owner could derive from a green roof.  These are composed especially by:

extension of the lifespan of the roof membrane


reduction of stormwater fees

energy savings/ insulation

These effects are easily quantified, and economic analyses and comparisons of the 24 objects showed that these benefits can oppose the inevitable expenses associated with installing and maintaining green roofs. The size of the greened surfaces varied between 21 m² und 2350 m². In total, the studied buildings comprised a roof surface of 1,4729 m². The roof pitch averaged between 0° und 35°. For the profitability study, a comparison of the economic investment and usage was carried out for a period of observation of 40 years. Compared to an unballasted/ fully exposed roof, 13 of the 24 objects were profitable for the building owners. Compared to a gravel ballast roof, the economic usefulness outweighed the investment on 21 out of 24 objects. The difference between fully-exposed and gravel-covered roofs follows the conventional construction bill, and the data clearly prove the economic value of green roof.

The whole article is published in German.