Slovenian pavilion is a global showcase for Urbanscape Solutions
The Slovenian pavilion at the World Expo in Dubai offers a stunning example of the infinite possibilities of Knauf Insulation’s Urbanscape Green Solutions.
The 460 m² pavilion was inspired by Slovenia’s stunning natural scenery and is located in the Sustainability District of the Expo Site at the entrance to the exhibition.
Matic Volk, General Commissioner of the Republic of Slovenia for the Expo, says: “The building draws attention due to its unique design. We wanted to show Slovenia’s reliance on nature and the country’s sustainable development.”
Sandi Pirš, Co-author of the design concept, says: “The lower levels celebrate Slovenian waters, rivers, sea and lakes and the upper level the country’s green forests and woodworking tradition.”
Barbara Šubic, Sales Director of Green Solutions, Knauf Insulation, says: “The six-metre-high Urbanscape® green wall covers an area of almost 500 m² created from 1,500 green wall panels and featuring 45,000 plants using 11 varieties of locally grown plants to represent Slovenian forests.”
Sustainable inspiration: the Slovenian pavilion featuring Urbanscape Green Solutions at the World Expo
Courtesy of ©Desert Dream Garden
Six reasons why we need more green roofs and walls
From decarbonisation, biodiversity and clean air to energy efficiency, thermal performance and improved comfort, green walls and roofs create better buildings and promote citizens’ well-being.
1 Manage storm water
In towns and cities, storm water instantly runs off unvegetated roof tops into streets, drains and sewage systems. In many urban centres huge volumes of ‘run-off’ water can create flooding as a result of overloading antiquated sewage systems. Green roofs capture and retain storm water allowing it to evaporate rather than flooding streets. The revision of the European Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive offers an opportunity to introduce more green infrastructure to Europe’s urban centres, while solutions such as Urbanscape® Detention Green Roof System can help capture more rainwater than ever. In one test case, Knauf Insulation’s Urbanscape was found to retain 66% of storm water.
2 Increase natural habitats
In Europe biodiversity is decreasing dramatically as more green spaces are covered. As a result, the European Commission’s EU Biodiversity Strategy is calling on cities with populations of more than 20,000 people to create Urban Greening Plans by the end of 2021 to promote “healthy ecosystems and urban greening”. Meanwhile, the Commission’s Pollinators Initiative is committed to “the green infrastructure needed to sustain pollinator habitats”. Vegetation is better for pollinators than concrete and with the net worth of pollinators estimated to be around 10% of total worth of agricultural production it is important to preserve their habitats. Green walls and roofs help.
3 Absorb carbon
The European Union is committed to ensuring Europe is the first carbon neutral continent in the world by 2050. Furthermore, under the conditions of NextGenerationEU funding which unlock €750 billion for post pandemic recovery, 37% of support must be allocated to climate action. Green infrastructure provides carbon sinks and, in the words of the Commission, “they are no regret solutions which provide social and economic benefits and build climate resilience”. A square metre of green roof can absorb the same CO2 as a regular car would emit during a 80 km drive.
4 Improve renovation
The European Commission’s strategy to renovate 35 million buildings in Europe by 2030 (‘Renovation Wave’) highlights the “role of roofs and walls to increase the green surface of our cities and improve the urban climate and biodiversity”. Buildings are responsible for 36% of emissions in Europe and renovation is the ideal way to make them more resilient and energy efficient. Green roofs provide excellent energy-saving insulation and offer energy savings for air-conditioning units by reducing the ambient temperature of the roof where they are installed.
5 Reduce city heat
Green roofs and walls cool down buildings by reducing ambient air temperatures in urban areas. During summer, temperatures in cities are often 5-7ºC higher than in the countryside due to heat absorption by buildings. In concentrated urban centres, the temperature on a traditional roof can be up to 40ºC higher than a green roof. According to data by the European Space Agency’s centre for Earth observation, the highest mean temperatures in the heart of Paris were 5ºC higher than outer, less urbanised areas.
6 Absorb air pollution
A huge amount of pollution is caused by transportation and residential heating. Particles and smog from cars, trucks and motorbikes are particularly unhealthy with long-term exposure to fine particulate matter or PM2.5 responsible for causing serious health problems. According to research, a square metre of green roof can remove 0.2 kg of dust particles every year. In one study in Singapore, the level of particles above a monitored 4,000 m² green roof was reduced by 6%.