The Swedish company Veg Tech is showing that trees, plants and bushes are much more than just a beautiful feature in an urban environment. Plants can actually be used to clean the air, save energy, reduce noise and manage surface water.
Vegetation technology involves using plants to solve technical problems. A better urban climate produced with the aid of green areas on building roofs and facades is one example of the advantages of the technology. The green areas result both in smaller temperature fluctuations and in natural air humidity. Plants can also be used to clean the air of harmful particles and reduce noise from traffic.
Green surfaces on roofs and facades are a smart solution for creating a greener urban environment without encroaching on the city’s land, where competition for space is often tough.
Many construction projects make use of the fact that plants on roof surfaces reduce runoff of surface water. A roof of pennywort (sedum) absorbs, stores and evaporates large quantities of precipitation. Risk of excess weight? No, a sedum roof from Veg Tech weighs only around 50 kg/m2 when saturated with water. Special properties also guarantee the surface layer of the facade.
Veg Tech has many years’ experience of vegetation technology. The company’s main market is the Nordic region, where it offers everything from roof vegetation, roof gardens and green courtyards to systems for surface water management and facade vegetation.
Greater use of plants means advantages for the urban environment and for individual properties. Vegetation on roof surfaces and facades, for example, can insulate the building against both heat and cold, with reduced energy costs as a result.
The insulating plant layer also makes the climate inside the premises more comfortable and the temperature more stable. With plants on the roof or in an inner courtyard, the property owner also benefits from a longer life for the weather-proofing layer of the surfaces. The protective vegetation shuts out harmful UV light from the sun and slows down the ageing of the surface layer.
Interest in greener urban environments is growing. Veg Tech is seeing increased demand for several plant products for urban environments such as roof vegetation and plants for surface water ponds.
The benefits of the technology and its ability to make use of surfaces that would otherwise be sterile and unused are thought to lie behind the growth in interest. Green surfaces on roofs and facades are a smart solution for creating a greener urban environment without encroaching on the city’s land, where competition for space is often tough. And, of course, plants on roofs, on terraces, in courtyards and on facades are beautiful. A green building, a green inner courtyard or a green district is usually well received.
Plants in water
Open areas of water, canals and systems for surface water represent another of Veg Tech’s profile product areas. Vegetation plays an important role here too. The plants are actually essential to efficient purification of the water. A large proportion of contaminants in surface water are particle-bound and can be separated via sedimentation. Vegetation in the water slows the circulation time of the water and the contaminated particles have a chance to sink to the bottom or become stuck in the vegetation.
– Everyone benefits from a greener environment in our habitat. It gives rise to biodiversity, a better climate and, last but not least, better health for those of us who live there, says Bengt-Erik Karlberg, CEO.