Why your Green Metal Roof isn’t that “Green”
There are more sustainable options than a green metal roof that are just as long lasting.
Green metal roofs have become a popular choice for consumers concerned with sustainability, but the word ‘green’ may be misleading when it comes to the actual sustainability of these roofs.
Designed to reflect nature’s beautiful image, a roof covered in vegetation creates a natural correlation to the environment and sustainability in our minds. Unfortunately, the reality is production of green metal roofs is actually resource-heavy and highly energy intensive.
Raw materials, such as metals and aluminum are major contributors to greenhouse gasses and emissions, and require high amounts of energy in mining and transportation. Not only is the production process for green metal roofs intensive, the addition of a vegetation layer further increases our resource usage and creates a bigger gap towards sustainability.
Green Roofing Shingles – what’s the deal?
Green roofing shingles (in the environmental sense of the word) typically aren’t even green in colour. Green roofing shingles are usually made from recycled materials such as rubber, plastic or wood fiber, reducing the amount of waste headed for landfills. Green roofing slates absorb less heat than traditional roofing, and work to keep buildings cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. They are designed for longevity, durability and energy efficiency, unlike green metal roofs. They require little to no maintenance and can last a lifetime.
Beware of ‘Greenwashing’
Environmental responsibility and the ability to boast ‘green’ has become a trend, stemming the term ‘greenwashing’. Greenwashing refers to companies that use misleading advertising and marketing materials to create false impressions of their impact on the environment in consumers minds. There are other factors that play into the environmental responsibility of a company that may not be as obvious.
Transparency – Companies that lack transparency and/or information regarding their processes and practices make it difficult for consumers to make decisions based on facts.
Limited Focus -Be aware of companies that focus on a single aspect of their business or product and base a claim to be environmentally friendly on that alone. As an example, recycled materials may be used in their products yet they do not uphold sustainable manufacturing practices.
The Difference Between Green Metal Roofing & Truly Green
Understanding the difference in sustainable roofing materials helps you to make more informed decisions that support your effort to consider the environment.
Authentic Roof materials are 100% Canadian sourced and manufactured using post-consumer recyclables, and are seen as innovators in the roofing industry for this reason.
Authentic Roof slates are UV, heat and impact resistant, comprised of high quality, non-toxic recyclable materials, and certified for the collection of rainwater for human consumption.
Emphasizing commitment to true sustainability, Authentic Roof has been supporting and practicing a closed-loop recycling system since day one.
Sustainable manufacturing practices and fair working conditions are another way Authentic Roof illustrates their commitment to ethics and the environment.
Contrary to perception, green metal roofs are derived from non-recyclable materials.
Green metal roofs require high energy consumption not only in their manufacturing process, but in additional maintenance and continual resources needed for their upkeep. The vegetation layer increases susceptibility to water damage, increasing the frequency of replacement.
Investing in the future
Your roof is a big investment in your future and the future of the planet, and the decisions we make today will have a lasting impact for generations to come. As consumers, we must be committed to supporting companies that prioritize sustainability and embody a broad environmental approach. Just as we consider the environmental responsibility of the companies we invest in, consideration must be made regarding our own responsibility to the environment. Sustainable roofing is one step we can all take together towards a greener future.