Green walls make older houses more energy efficient

Walls covered with vegetation can reduce the heat that leaks out of houses by 31 percent, British research shows.

Researchers at the University of Plymouth investigated how two buildings with scale walls on the campus differed. One wall of the building was covered with vegetation – where different plants can grow from pockets on the wall – while the other was in original condition. Otherwise, the facades were similar and directed in the same direction.

The heat loss in the building with the green facade was after five weeks of measurements 31 percent lower than in the other, the difference in temperature was also lower on the wall with vegetation.

Since the majority of buildings in England were built before 1964, researchers believe that green facades can be of great importance. Home heating accounts for about 60 per cent of all energy consumed in buildings in the UK, which in turn accounts for 17 per cent of the country’s total greenhouse gas emissions.

“It is therefore imperative that we begin to improve the heat performance of these existing buildings if the UK is to achieve its zero-emission target by 2050,” said researcher Matthew Fox in a press release.

Researchers also see other benefits of the green walls, such as increased biodiversity.

“Living walls can lead to improved air quality, noise reduction and increased health and well-being,” says researcher Thomas Murphy.

The study is published in the scientific journal Building and Enviroment.

Source: Nyteknik – Senaste nytt by

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