A group of activists is pushing for a new building code that would require rooftop gardens on large structures across the city and county of Denver.
Specialized gardens known as green roofs are designed to improve urban air quality and cool temperatures. Similar initiatives are already in place in cities like San Francisco and Toronto.
“We need to act on climate change now,” said Brandon Rietheimer of the Denver Green Roof Initiative.
The group is collecting signatures to put a measure on the ballot that would create a new building code requiring buildings greater than 25,000 square feet to turn a portion of their roof into a green roof or a combination green roof and solar roof.
Research ranks Denver as the 11th worst city across the United States when it comes to ozone pollution. It is also ranked as the 3rd worst city in a heating trend known as the urban heat island effect.
“That’s when the city heats up from all the concrete, all the buildings,” Rietheimer told CBS4’s Melissa Garcia.
In addition to improving urban air quality and cooling down temperatures, green roofs help to manage storm water and to increase biodiversity.